China-Maldives Business Forum held in Shanghai

The China-Maldives Business Forum, created to promote economic ties between the two countries, was held in Shanghai on Sunday.

The forum was organised by the Maldives embassy in China and the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade.

Over 23 Chinese businesses participated in the forum, most of them operating in the areas of construction, fisheries, tourism and transportation.

A presentation on investment opportunities in the Maldives was given during the forum by Special Envoy of the President, Ibrahim Hussain Zaki; Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr Ahmed Shaheed; and Minister of Economic Development, Mohamed Rasheed.


President Nasheed focusing on development projects, not local politics

On his return from Bhutan and China, President Mohamed Nasheed said Vice President Dr Mohamed Waheed’s recent criticisms, and individual parties regrouping as a strong opposition, did not concern him, reports Miadhu.

President Nasheed said his main concern at the moment are the development projects for the country, some of which could begin soon, he said.

The president added that the Chinese government will donate US$210 million to the Maldives, US$10 million of which will be grant assistance.

He said China would work on increasing the number of Chinese tourists to the Maldives, as well as assisting in improving the medical sector and deliver more scholarships for Maldivian students.


President Nasheed meets with Chinese President

As part of his official visit to China for the Shanghai World Expo 2010, President Mohamed Nasheed met with Chinese President Hu Jintao yesterday at the International Convention Centre in Shanghai.

President Jintao said President Nasheed’s visit was a historic one and represented the importance of relations between China and the Maldives.

He thanked the government and people of the Maldives for their support of China and hoped to strengthen bilateral relations to benefit both countries. He said he hoped to increase mutual trust, economic and trade cooperation, and improve communication and coordination between the two governments.

President Jintao continued to say China would assist the Maldives in overcoming economic challenges, and pledged 50 million Chinese Yuan (US$7.3 million) in grant aid for the Maldives.

The Chinese president added climate change was an issue equally important to China as it is to the Maldives and assured support to the Maldives on the issue.

President Nasheed thanked the Chinese government and people for making an important contribution to the social and economic development of the Maldives.

He said the Maldives was facing many developmental challenges due to climate change, with fresh water and housing both in short supply.

President Nasheed encouraged Chinese companies working in renewable energy technologies to invest in the Maldives, thus improving their bid to become carbon-neutral by 2020 and creating an example on green technologies.

President Nasheed also briefed President Jintao on the recent sixteenth South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Summit that took place in Bhutan last week, as China is an observer country of the SAARC.


President returns to the Maldives

After their official visits to Bhutan and China, President Mohamed Nasheed and First Lady Laila Ali have returned to the Maldives.

The president visited Bhutan for the Sixteenth South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Summit, which was held in Thimphu on 28 and 29 of April.

President Nasheed met with several SAARC country leaders during his first visit to a SAARC summit.

They departed for China after the summit to attend the Shanghai World Expo 2010 and inaugurate the Maldives Pavilion at the fair.

The president also met with Chinese President Hu Jinato and with Honourary Consuls to the Maldives in China.

First Lady Laila Ali also met with the Honourary Consul in Shanghai, who donated US$20,000 to Kudakudhige Hiya home for children in Vilingili.


President meets with Honourary Consuls in China

As part of their official visit to China, President Mohamed Nasheed and First Lady Laila Ali met with Honourary Consuls to the Maldives in China.

President Nasheed met with Honourary Consul in Shainghai, Yang Guisheng, and with Honourary Consul in Hong Kong, Bob N Harulela.

President Nasheed called for more dynamic roles of Honourary Consuls in the development of the Maldives, noting they could play an important role in developing stronger relations and increasing commercial ties between the Maldives and their countries.

The president noted the areas the Maldives needed most assistance, and the consuls assured assistance to the Maldives and said they would be more engaged in finding new investments for the Maldives.


President inaugurates Maldives Pavillion at Shanghai World Expo

President Mohamed Nasheed and First Lady Laila Ali arrived in Shanghai, China yesterday morning for the inauguration of the Maldives Pavillion at the Shanghai World Expo 2010.

President Nasheed said the Maldives has been participating in international exhibitions of over 100 years and reminders of the participation of the Maldives in the Shanghai Expo show the country’s active involvement in the international community.

He added the Maldives’ participation in the Expo would be highly beneficial for the country.

The Expo was formally opened to the public yesterday, and is expected to draw 70 million people over six months. There are over 200 pavilions from different countries, representing the urban sustainability theme “Better City, Better Life.”

On his way to China, President Nasheed met with Thai Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya. They discussed bilateral relations between the two countries and projects being developed by Thailand in the Maldives.


President Nasheed departs to Bhutan for SAARC summit

President Mohamed Nasheed and First Lady Laila Ali departed on an official visit to Bhutan yesterday morning to attend the 16th South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Summit.

The Summit of Heads of State and Heads of the Government of SAARC countries will be held in Thimphu, Bhutan on 28 and 29 April.

President Nasheed will also meet other SAARC country leaders to discuss bilateral relations and issues of regional interest.

Before his departure at the official jetty, President Nasheed said SAARC needed to play a more active role in addressing regional issues. He added he would work with other leaders of SAARC to strengthen and expand the role of the organisation in the region.

After their visit to Bhutan, the president and first lady will be going to China on an official visit start 1 May.


President Nasheed meets with Chinese delegation

President Mohamed Nasheed has met with the visiting Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) delegation at the President’s Office, reports Miadhu.

President Nasheed noted the Maldives and China enjoyed close and cordial relations, and said China was making important contributions to the social and economic growth of the Maldives.

He added that both countries share concerns such as climate change, and the two governments should collaborate more on the issue.

Vice Chairman of the CPPCC, Sun Jiazheng, assured the president that China would continue to cooperate with the Maldives, and added climate change is a great concern to his country.

Jiazheng briefed President Nasheed on China’s political system and the government’s efforts to further develop the country and bring prosperity to its people.


Chinese delegation visiting the Maldives

A delegation of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) has arrived in the Maldives for a good-will visit, reports Miadhu.

Vice Chairman of the National Committee of the CPPCC, Sun Jiazheng, is heading the delegation.

Speaker of Parliament, Abdulla Shahid, invited the delegation to the Maldives.