Mal­dives Prez-elect has said bi­lat­eral projects to stay: China

Millennium Post - - Mp World -

BEI­JING: China on Thurs­day said the Mal­dives' pres­i­den­t­elect Ibrahim Mo­hamed Solih has as­sured the im­ple­men­ta­tion of the pre­vi­ous bi­lat­eral agree­ments and con­tinue with the ongoing projects in the In­dian Ocean is­land na­tion.

Pres­i­dent Ab­dulla Yameen's shock de­feat in the Septem­ber 23 elec­tion was widely re­ported as a blow for China, which fi­nanced his ad­min­is­tra­tion's flag­ship in­fra­struc­ture projects with loans in ex­cess of a bil­lion dol­lars, draw­ing ac­cu­sa­tions of a debt trap from the main op­po­si­tion party's leader.

Af­ter the de­feat of Yameen, Chi­nese Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping con­grat­u­lated Solih. China's Am­bas­sador to the Mal­dives Zhang Lizhong also called on Solih as mark of China's sup­port to the power tran­si­tion in Male.

Com­ment­ing on Zhang's re­cent meet­ing with Solih, Chi­nese For­eign Min­istry spokesman Lu Kang told the me­dia here on Thurs­day that the newly pres­i­dent elect had as­sured con­tin­u­a­tion of the projects.

Zhang told Solih that China is will­ing to work with new gov­ern­ment to ce­ment the tra­di­tional friend­ship, deepen mu­tual ben­e­fit co­op­er­a­tion and el­e­vate bi­lat­eral ties to a higher level, Lu said.

Solhi "ex­pressed thanks for Chi­nese con­tri­bu­tion to­wards the Mal­dives' na­tional de­vel­op­ment , he said.

"He said that the new gov­ern­ment will stay com­mit­ted to en­hanc­ing ties with China fol­low­ing the al­ready signed co­op­er­a­tion agree­ments and con­tinue to im­ple­ment the ex­ist­ing co­op­er­a­tion projects and con­tinue to ex­plore co­op­er­a­tion in more ar­eas such as in­fra­struc­ture, liveli­hood and tourism so as to move for­ward our bi­lat­eral ties," Lu stated.

Asked about crit­i­cism re­lated to the Chi­nese projects and whether China has con­cerns about their con­tin­u­a­tion, Lu said Solih has as­sured the con­tin­u­a­tion of the projects.

China and the Mal­dives con­ducted co­op­er­a­tion in many ar­eas. This co­op­er­a­tion is on the ba­sis of con­sul­ta­tion be­tween both the gov­ern­ments, he said.

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