Speaking at a function organised by United Nations offices in the Maldives today to mark this year’s UN Day, Vice President Dr Mohamed Waheed paid tribute to UN for its support for the development of the Maldives.

The Vice President said, since the Maldives joined UN 45 years ago on 21 September 2010, the Maldives has achieved many developmental milestones.

“Our achievements in reaching the MDGs has placed us on the road to become a Middle Income Country starting next year”, he said.

He also noted the democratic transition in the Maldives that began “with the adoption of the new constitution, the establishement of new democratic institutions and the holding of free and fair elections”.

“None of these achievements would have been possible without the support of the United Nations”, added the Vice President.

The Vice President said with every successful achievement there were a number challenges that the Maldives had to face.

He noted that, with the graduation from list of Least Developed Countries, the Maldives would no longer be eligible to some of the grant funding that it received previously, and simultaneously face the development challenges and priorities that include climate change and social protection.

In this regard, he said, “the achievement or non achievement of the remaining MDGs, the consolidation of democracy, the establishment of a safe and protective environment for the most vulnerable of our citizens...are all being articulated by the competing powerful forces in the political, economic and social arenas”.

Therefore, the Vice President called for continuous support and engagement of the international community to prevent breakdown and smoothen the transitions in the Maldives.

He also acknowledged the importance of strong civil society and democratic institutions in achieving these transitions.

Vice President Dr Waheed ended his remarks by reiterating the government’s committment to continue to promote internationalism and multilateralism as the fundamental cornerstones of the Maldives’ international outlook.

Today UN marks its 65th anniversary. UN Day is commemorated every year on 24 October, the day in 1945 when the UN Charter entered into force.