Maldives Balances Diplomacy with India and China Amid Tensions

Amid the ongoing India-Maldives dispute, a significant update has emerged. On his inaugural visit to China, senior Maldivian minister Mohammad Saeed highlighted President Mohammad Muizzu’s recent visit to New Delhi and underscored the importance of maintaining robust ties with India for the Maldives’ tourism-based economy. 

Economic Development and Trade Minister Mohammad Saeed’s remarks come as Male reestablishes its relationship with New Delhi following President Muizzu’s successful visit to India.

President Muizzu arrived in India on June 9 to attend Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s swearing-in ceremony. Although Muizzu is perceived as a China supporter, his visit marked a significant diplomatic step. Speaking at the 15th World Economic Forum (WEF) in Dalian, Saeed reaffirmed the Maldives’ commitment to India, calling it their closest neighbor.

Addressing questions about the tensions, Saeed emphasized the long-standing positive relations between the two nations. He highlighted India’s critical role in the Maldivian tourism sector and the substantial Indian investments in the Maldives.

Upon his return to Male, President Muizzu described his official visit to India for PM Modi’s swearing-in ceremony as a ‘remarkable success’ for the Maldives. He emphasized that strong bilateral ties would bring greater prosperity for the Maldives and its citizens. Notably, Saeed’s visit to China follows President Muizzu’s visit to Beijing in January, marking continued diplomatic engagements with both India and China.

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