Bilateral agreements between the Maldives and Malaysia were inked Wednesday morning during Prime Minister Najib Razak’s official two-day visit.
Four Memoranda of Understanding were signed following a one-to-one meeting between the prime minister and President Abdulla Yameen and official talks between government officials.
The MoUs involve plans to establish a Maldives Cultural Centre in Malaysia and improve mutual cooperation in the fields of health, higher education, and fire fighting and rescue training.
Yameen and Razak witnessed the signing ceremony at the president’s office.
Razak and First Lady Datin Paduka Rosmah Mansor arrived Tuesday evening and were greeted at the airport by the home minister and foreign minister.
The official welcoming ceremony took place Wednesday morning at the Republic Square in the capital. Yameen and First Lady Fathmath Ibrahim greeted the guests at the Izzuddin jetty and observed a cultural item by students as well as a seven-gun salute and guard of honour by the Maldives National Defence Force.
The president walked with the prime minister to his office, accompanied by a cultural procession.
In a joint press statement, Yameen called Malaysia “a reliable, consistent, and a staunch supporter of the Maldives” and noted plans to boost business, trade and investment cooperation.
According to the president’s office, Yameen “emphasised on working closely to discover potential win-win cooperation in the area of tourism and hospitality” and “underlined the discussion on exchanging views on the critical issue of climate change and sustainable development”.
Both leaders “unequivocally agreed to redouble joint efforts to combat the menace of terrorism that threatens the world.”
Yameen extended the invitation for Razak’s current visit during an official visit to Malaysia in March last year, during which he sought Malaysia’s help for the Maldives to avoid “unfair punishment” by the Commonwealth over widely condemned human rights abuses.