India extends US$100 million standby credit facility to Maldives

India today extended a US$100 million standby credit facility to the Maldives in support of economic stability. India has agreed to assist developing the country’s banking and financial infrastructure and capacity building.

“Bilateral cooperation between India and Maldives has been on a high growth trajectory in recent times,” said India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. “We are working together on increasing connectivity and closer economic cooperation. These efforts are bearing fruit.”

In a signing ceremony at the President’s Office this morning, the two governments signed five agreements including a Memorandum of Understanding for international terrorism, drug trafficking, disaster management and coastal security; a program of cooperation between 2012 and 2015; and India’s commitment to renovate Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital (IGMH).

A Framework Agreement on Cooperation for Development outlined a joint effort to support the growth of trade and investment, food security, fisheries development, tourism, transportation, information technology, renewable energy, communications and connectivity.

“These agreements have a number of advantages to both countries,” said President Mohamed Nasheed. “India’s contributions in these agreements goes a long way to the Maldives’ development.”

The heads of state announced their shared interest in opening passenger and cargo ferry services between Cochin and Male as soon as possible. The President said India would examining the project, and he hoped that it would support the development of North Kulhudhuffushi port.

Prime Minister Singh congratulated the Maldives on “an extremely successful SAARC Summit,” and expressed confidence in President Nasheed’s new role as SAARC chairman. “The pace of our activities will gather even greater momentum,” he said.

The President thanked the Prime Minister for his “moral and other support in holding and concluding the summit with such success.”

Following the ceremony, Prime Minister Singh delivered the first parliamentary address by a foreign head of state in the Maldives.