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India inks $50 million defence LoC agreement with Maldives

**EDS: TWITTER IMAGE POSTED BY @DrSJaishankar ON SATURDAY, FEB. 20, 2021** Maldives: External Affairs Minister S.Jaishankar being received by Foreign Minister of Maldives Abdullah Shahid on his arrival in Maldives. (PTI Photo)(PTI02_20_2021_000164A) (PTI)Premium
**EDS: TWITTER IMAGE POSTED BY @DrSJaishankar ON SATURDAY, FEB. 20, 2021** Maldives: External Affairs Minister S.Jaishankar being received by Foreign Minister of Maldives Abdullah Shahid on his arrival in Maldives. (PTI Photo)(PTI02_20_2021_000164A) (PTI)

  • India will always be a reliable security partner for the Maldives, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said today

India on Sunday reiterated its commitment to the Maldives' security and signed a $50 million defence Line of Credit (LoC) agreement with it to boost the maritime capabilities of the strategic island nation.

India will always be a reliable security partner for the Maldives, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said today, as New Delhi signed the agreement with the island nation to facilitate capability building in the maritime domain.

The $50 million credit line agreement for defence projects was signed between the Finance Ministry of Maldives and the Export Import Bank of India.

The signing of the agreement took place after Jaishankar held talks with Maldivian Defence Minister Mariya Didi, Minister of Finance Ibrahim Ameer, Minister of Economic Development Fayyaz Ismail and Minister of National Planning, Housing and Infrastructure Mohamed Aslam.

"Delighted to meet Speaker @MohamedNasheed. As always full of ideas & energy. Told me that building democracy was the big project in Maldives. And that India is a valuable development assistance partner," Jaishankar tweeted.

"Cordial meeting with Defence Minister @MariyaDidi . Useful exchange on our defence cooperation. India will always be a reliable security partner for the Maldives," he tweeted.

"Glad to sign with Defence Minister @MariyaDidi the UTF Harbour Project agreement. Will strengthen Maldivian Coast Guard capability and facilitate regional HADR efforts. Partners in development, partners in security," he said.

Didi said it was a great pleasure to welcome Jaishankar.

"From time immemorial Defence Cooperation has been a key element of the sisterly relationship that exists between India and the Maldives. The Coast Guard Harbour & Dockyard at SIFAVARU will mark another significant milestone," she tweeted.

Jaishankar also witnessed the signing of a project execution contract for the construction of roads in Addu, the second-largest urban area in the Maldives in terms of population.

"Underscores the importance of connectivity in our Maldives partnership," he tweeted.

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