Indian announces financial aid of $1.4 billion to the Maldives, caught in the Chinese debt trap

New Delhi: India has announced financial aid of  $1.4 billion, for the Maldives, trapped under the burden of the Chinese debt. Along with this, four memorandums of understanding (MoU) have been signed between India and Maldives. This announcement was made after bilateral talks between Maldives President Solih, currently on his India visit and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. At this time, both the countries announced that joint efforts to maintain peace and stability in the Indian Ocean region would be undertaken.

Maldivian President Solih is on a three-day visit to India. President Solih embarked on a visit to India within just one month of assuming power and that clearly states the foreign policy of Maldives. Prime Minister Narendra Modi welcomed the Maldivian President saying that the visit of the Maldivian President is a matter of honour for India. At the same time, India has announced a financial aid of $1.4 billion to the Maldives.

China had entangled the Maldives into its debt trap during the tenure of previous President Yameen.  The new Maldivian government had expressed a desire to get aid from India to pull the Maldives out of this debt. India has responded positively to this, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced an aid of $1.4 billion. This will strengthen the ties between the two countries. At the same time, the two countries have signed MoUs in visa, cultural cooperation, agricultural industries and information technology sectors.

India will be taking the initiative to increase the cooperation between India and Maldives at every level. Prime Minister Modi and President Solih announced in the joint press conference that both the countries had decided to make joint efforts for peace and stability in the Indian Ocean region. It was also informed in the joint press conference that the security concerns of the two countries are interlinked and both the countries will be sensitive to each other’s security.

India and Maldives shall also be cooperating in the area of marine safety. They will be taking important steps for bilateral trade, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that there is a huge opportunity for the Indian companies to invest in the Maldives. Meanwhile, this developing cooperation between India and Maldives has become a matter of a headache for China. China had planned to entangle the Maldives in a debt trap and use the country to fulfil its financial and military interests. Therefore, China even attempted to bring its agent, President Yameen, into power. But the Chinese efforts backfired, and the Maldivian people imposed their confidence in Solih in the recently held elections.

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