Japan, Maldives Foreign Ministers Confirm Broad Cooperation

REUTERS file photo
An aerial view of Maldives capital Male.

MALE — Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi confirmed Sunday that Japan will cooperate in a wide range of areas to achieve a free and open Indo-Pacific during a meeting with his Maldivian counterpart Abdulla Shahid in Male, the capital of the Maldives. This is the second time a Japanese foreign minister has visited the country in recent years, following a trip in January 2018.

During the meeting, the ministers agreed to strengthen cooperation in the fields of diplomacy and security. Japan has provided support for seawall construction in the Maldives, and Hayashi said during the joint press conference after the meeting that Japan is ready to push forward a study on a new project that will symbolize the countries’ friendship. He also revealed that Japan is considering exempting Maldivian citizens from visa requirements when entering Japan.

After the meeting, Hayashi observed a water discharge exercise conducted with a ¥230 million fireboat, donated by Japan as part of official development assistance.