President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih met with the World Bank’s Country Director to the Maldives, Mr Faris Hadad-Zervos, and Country Manager, Ms Chiyo Kanda, this morning at the President’s Office. Chief of Staff Uz. Ali Zahir, Minister of Finance Mr Ibrahim Ameer, Minister of State for Finance, Mr Ismail Ali Manik, Secretary, Foreign Relations, Ms. Sabra Noordeen, Chief Resource Mobilization & Debt Management Executive at the Finance Ministry, Ms. Mariyam Abdul Nasir, and Ms Shadiya Adam, a World Bank country staff assigned to the Maldives were also present at the meeting.
The President thanked the World Bank for the continuous assistance they provide to the Maldives, highlighting the constructive relationship the Maldives has had with the Bank over the past 42 years, collaboraing on over 32 projects cumulatively worth in excess of USD 295 million. At present the World Bank is assisting the Maldives in an array of fields, including public finance, renewable energy, capacity-building, improving the education sector, enhancing the fisheries sector and investing in human capital.
The World Bank was also among the first to provide the Maldives with Covid-19 relief assistance, and have been helping the country implement projects to strengthen its health sector preparedness, infrastructural resilience and capacity to respond to natural disasters. Through the International Finance Corporation the World Bank has also been working with the Maldives to strengthen the country’s private sector.
The President expressed that the World Bank’s support is more vital now than ever in light of the difficult national circumstances the Covid-19 pandemic has had on the country's economy. He welcomed and urged their continued assistance as the Maldives builds on its efforts to develop greater resilience.
The World Bank’s delegation relayed its readiness to assist the Maldives accomplish its macro-fiscal priorities and enhance its economic resilience, while helping the country recover from Covid-19. While congratulating the President on the Government’s positive trajectory in the past two years, the delegation wished continued success in working towards women’s empowerment and decentralization. The country director stated that visiting at this time, during the global crisis is important and show's the World Bank' commitment to supporting the Maldives. He further stated that the Maldivians are a resilient people, and looked forward to working together to improve access to concessional financing.
Ending the call, the President and the World Bank’s Country Director and Country Manager expressed their mutual keenness to work together for common benefit.