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Saudi Arabia deposits 5 bln USD at Turkish Central Bank

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RIYADH, March 6 (Xinhua) — Saudi Arabia announced on Tuesday that it had deposited 5 billion U.S. dollars at the Central Bank of Türkiye.

The deposit, which was part of an agreement between the Saudi Fund for Development and the Central Bank of Türkiye, revealed the close cooperation and historical ties between the two countries, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

The kingdom’s King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre launched in February a nationwide donation campaign to help the earthquake-hit victims in Syria and Türkiye through an online platform.

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Econ Minister assures food supply without interruption

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Minister of Economic Development and Trade Mohamed Saeed, has assured Maldives will receive essential food item supplies without interruptions.

Speaking at a recent rally at Shaviyani atoll Milandhoo, the minister said a shipment of flour from Turkey has been dispatched already, and added that the government has already arranged for uninterrupted supply of essential food items throughout the year.

He added that President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu has arranged for a total quantity to last one entire year with an additional 10% of essential food rations from Turkey.

According to minister Saeed, under the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the Turkish government, Maldives will now have ease of importation of 35 different types of commodities from the Middle-Eastern ally.

The minister further announced government’s strategies to maintain prices of staple and other essential foods with the assistance of State Trading Organization (STO). He said that a working committee has already been formed comprising of the ministry and STO’s officials, who are working with the oversight of the President’s Office.

Additionally, the minister said a Maldivian trade delegations will be flying to the UK on May 15, 2023 and to Washington, US, on July 10, 2024, to seek advise and support on shaping up the public finance sector of the Maldives for long-term efficiency.

Source(s): sun.mv

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SDFC expands funding assistance for reef fishers, related SMEs

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The SME Development Finance Corporation (SDFC) has added new categories to the ‘Kandufalhuge Nafaa’ loan facility; specifically “targeted toward supporting the growth and development of reef fisheries”.

SDFC will issue up to a maximum of MVR 700,000 in funding towards the development of reef fisheries; by way of financing either local fishers or small-to-medium (SMEs) enterprises operating in reef fishing activities.

The loan facility is subject to an interest rate of 5% with a six-month grace period, and a 10-year repayment period.

SDFC further highlights that all the vessels financed under the loan would be held as collateral or mortgage.

Expenses exceeding the maximum MVR 700,000 ceiling of the loan facility should be incurred by the debtor, added SDFC.

The facility is specifically targeted for reef fishers, suppliers of reef fish; either processed, packed or frozen to be sold at industrial capacity, exporters, and local suppliers from the atolls.

SDFC further highlighted that the facility is aimed at boosting specific activities of any individual or SME operating in reef fisheries sector, and they include;

  • To develop a new vessel or repair existing vessel used in reef fisheries activities
  • Installation of engines in vessels used for reef fishing
  • Procurement/purchase of equipment used in navigating or commandeering the vessel
  • For repairs and modifications of a vessel used in reef fishing
  • Procurement/purchase of fish processing machinery and equipment
  • Procurement/purchase of packing materials and equipment

Source(s): sun.mv

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Maldivian lowers surfboard transport fees as pledged by President

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Island Aviation Services Limited (IASL) has announced the fee reduction for transporting surfboards via the national airline, Maldivian, as pledged by President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu.

As such, the national airline has announced reduced fees for surfboard transportation. Charges for larger surfboards were decreased by 33%, while smaller ones saw a reduction of 66%, marking a tangible step towards supporting local businesses and promoting tourism.

President Dr. Muizzu responded to concerns raised by Surfing Operator Ahmed Rasheed from Gadhdhoo in Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll, during the “Raees ge Javaab” series, where citizens directly engage with the President on various issues.

During the session, Rasheed highlighted the steep fees imposed by the national airline for transporting surfboards, stressing the impact on local businesses in Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll. Acknowledging the significance of the issue, Dr. Muizzu committed to reducing the fees, recognising their adverse effects on surf-related enterprises and the tourism sector. Stressing surfing’s vital role in the Maldives’ economy, particularly in Gadhdhoo, the President swiftly acted to fulfill his pledge.

Source(s): PsmNews

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