As part of his ongoing state visit to the Republic of Seychelles, President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has held bilateral discussions with the President of Seychelles, His Excellency Danny Faure. The two leaders’ conversation shone a light on some of the many areas in which we cooperate and on the common challenges that we share as island nations in the Indian Ocean, and as fellow members of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS).

Accordingly, the discussions highlighted our common commitment to the peace and security of the Indian Ocean Region (IOR), the need to take forward cooperation on climate change, developing the blue economy and combatting illicit activity such as maritime piracy; narcotics and human trafficking; and terrorism.

In light of the manifold areas in which our two governments cooperate, both leaders expressed their joy that this visit (the first state visit by a Maldivian leader to Seychelles) has proved so fruitful with both our governments agreeing to cooperate on a range of fields, formalized by the signing of a general cooperation agreement and six Memoranda of Understanding. These MOUs encompass several spheres, including general cooperation, blue economy, foreign ministry cooperation, and also sports cooperation.

President Solih noted his elation that the athletes of both our countries were able to participate in the recently held Indian Ocean Island Games, which took place in Mauritius. As agreed upon by a majority vote of the IOIG governing council, the next iteration of the event will take place in Maldives in 2023.

The President thanked the Seychelles immensely for their support for our IOIG bid. Further, he expressed that he looked forward to Seychelles’ participation in the next games, and expressed gratitude in particular for the aforementioned sporting cooperation MOU that both governments have agreed to sign, which will help build the Maldives’ sporting capacity and ready ourselves for the next games, which will introduce for the first time ever in the Maldives competitive water sports such as windsurfing and sailing.

President Solih also expressed gratitude for the Seychellois governments decision to provide four annual scholarships commencing this year, for Maldivian students to study maritime fields, at the University of Seychelles.

Further, the President also commented on the warmth and hospitality that had been accorded him, the First Lady, and the Maldivian delegation throughout their stay.

The Seychellois President warmly reciprocated President Solih’s warm sentiments. He also expressed that it was his pleasure to receive President Solih and the First Lady in Seychelles, and further noted his satisfaction that our two governments are en route to increasing our cooperation in manifold spheres, thereby bolstering our mutual bilateral friendship.