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Cooperation

Bilateral Cooperation

i)                    High-level Visits

The first high-level visit to China was in 1984 by the then President of Maldives, His Excellency Mr. Maumoon Abdul Gayoom. Since then frequent visits have been exchanged between delegations led by high level dignitaries of both countries. Among Chinese dignitaries who visited Maldives include Premier Zhu Rongji, former Premier of the State Council of China, His Excellency Mr. Zhang Gaoli, Member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, Secretary of the CPC Tianjin Municipal Committee, His Excellency Mr. Qin Guangrong, Governor of Yunnan Province, His Excellency Mr. Yang Jiechi, Minister of Foreign Affairs of China, His Excellency Mr. Chen Deming, Minister of Commerce of China,  and His Excellency Mr. Cai Wu, Minister of Culture of China.

In September 2006, former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom visited China which paved the way to further deepen the relations between Maldives and China.

In May 2010, former President H.E. Mohamed Nasheed undertook a state visit to China, at the invitation of the Chinese Government. The two-day visit to Shanghai, coinciding with the Opening of the Shanghai World Exposition proved to be a milestone in the friendly and cooperative relationship between the Maldives and China.

In September 2012, H.E. Dr. Waheed, President of the Maldives visited China to attend the 2nd China-Eurasia Expo in Urumqi, where he met with former Premier of the State Council of the People’s Republic of China, H. E. Mr. Wen Jiabao.

In addition to these, a number of Maldivian cabinet ministers visited China in the recent past. Among them are Former Minister of Defence and National Security, His Excellency Mr. Ameen Faisal, Former Minister of Education, His Excellency Dr. Mustafa Lutfy, Former Minister of Housing, Transport and Environment, Former Minister His Excellency Mr. Mohamed Aslam, Former Minister of Health and Family, Her Excellency Dr. Aminath Jameel, Former Minister Minister of Human Resources, Youth and Sports, His Excellency Mr. Hassan Latheef, Speaker of parliament, Hon. Abdulla Shahid, Foreign Minister Dr. Abdul Samad Abdulla, Minister of Tourism, Arts & Culture Mr. Ahmed Adheeb Abdul Ghafoor, Minister of Environment and Energy Dr. Mariyam Shakeela, Minister of Housing and Infrastructure Dr. Muizzu.

ii)                  Agreements

Maldives has signed several bilateral agreements and Memorandum of Understanding with China. Among them are Agreements on Economic and Technical Cooperation, Mutual Exemption of Visas and Visa Fees, on Education Cooperation, on Cultural Cooperation and various other important areas of mutual interest.

iii)                Assistance

Since 1981, China has continued to provide project assistance and equipment support in a number of areas. The Housing Projects undertaken with Chinese assistance is of particular significance and has helped to partly reduce the pressure in Male’ for housing needs. Also other infrastructure projects such as the Construction of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs building and Construction of the National Museum deserve special mention here. The tremendous support and assistance to the Maldives, following the disastrous tsunami of 2004, especially through the Housing Construction Project in H. Dh. Nolhivaranfaru is testimony to the deep affection and close friendship between the peoples of China and the Maldives.

 

Trade

Although Maldives and China began their economic and technological cooperation in 1981 and direct trade was restored in 1982, no significant trade was conducted until 2002, when Maldives-China trade volume totaled US$ 2.977 million, of which Maldives imports accounted for US$ 2.975 million and its exports US$ 2,000.

Since then the volume of trade has increased significantly with imports from China reaching USD 17.354 million and exports reaching USD 584,000. While the trade balance is in favour of China, the increase in exports from Maldives to China in percentage terms is quite significant.

In recent years, the number of Maldivian visitors to China for trade and business activities has also increased substantially making China one of the most preferred destinations for Maldivian traders. For the Maldivian exporter, China is becoming an emerging market for their marine products such as Yellowfin Tuna and Sea Cucumber.

 

Tourism

In recent years, Maldives has seen remarkable positive growth in the number of tourist arrivals from China.  In 2010, the highest number of tourists visited the Maldives from China, which is an increase of 96.1% from that of 2009 and the numbers are expected to increase in the future.

More Information and tourism related statistics are available at www.tourism.gov.mv

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