Business / Economy

Maldives officially joins China's maritime silk road policy

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-12-19 11:37

COLOMBO -- Maldives has joined China's 21st Century Maritime Silk Road policy this week, a statement from the Chinese embassy in Male said on Thursday.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to officially join China' s maritime silk road policy was signed after the first ever Joint Committee on Trade and Economic Cooperation, held in Beijing on Tuesday.

The MoU was signed on behalf of the Maldivian government by Economic Minister Mohamed Saeed who, along with Vice Minister of Chinese Ministry of Commerce Gao Yan, co-chaired the meeting.

"In 2014, bilateral trade is expected to exceed $100 million. Chinese enterprises have been increasingly interested in investing in Maldives," Gao was quoted as saying by the statement.

"For four years, China has remained as the largest source country of tourist visiting Maldives. China is willing to join hands with Maldives to build the '21st Century Maritime Silk Road, ' promoting the establishment of bilateral free trade area, and constantly improving bilateral economic and trade relations," the statement added.

Discussions during the Joint Committee meeting had revolved around ongoing infrastructure projects funded by China. These include upgrading the Maldives international airport, constructing a bridge between the airport island and capital Male as well as housing and road projects.

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