Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA) says it supplied more US dollars this year than the last four years, in its efforts to combat the dollar black market.
The central bank said it continues to supply US dollars to banks and state-owned enterprises.
In 2019, the MMA sold total USD 626.6 million under its foreign exchange intervention policy.
And in 2022, the central bank upped the amount to USD 993.7 million.
MMA said it increased its interventions by 3 percent this year.
MMA said it supplied US dollars to the State Trading Organization (STO) import staples, pharmaceuticals and fuel again this year, in order to mediate the impact on the foreign exchange rate due to the rise in global fuel rates.
The central bank said it also supplied US dollars to other state-owned enterprises to finance debt repayments.
MMA said that as part of additional efforts to address US dollar constraints faced by banks, it also issues US dollars to Maldivians who travel overseas at the rate of USD 500 per traveler via the Bank of Maldives (BML), and provides US dollars to hajj and umrah groups, and to people who travel overseas for medical treatment and education under set policies.
The dollar rate is currently upwards of MVR 18 in the black market – higher than the fixed bank rate of MVR 15.42. The BML has the daily limit for US dollar withdrawals fixed at USD 1,600.
SDFC expands funding assistance for reef fishers, related SMEs
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
Maldivian lowers surfboard transport fees as pledged by President
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.
Govt launches ‘Addu Asseyri Tourism Development Plan’
The Tourism Ministry has launched the ‘Addu Asseyri Tourism Development Plan’, an initiative under the administration’s ‘Hafuthaa 14’ roadmap.
The project was launched in a ceremony attended by Tourism Minister Ibrahim Faisal and Addu City Mayor Ali Nizar in a ceremony held at the Addu City Council on Thursday.
According to the Tourism Ministry, the ‘Addu Asseyri Tourism Development Plan’ is in line with the administration’s ambitious first 100-day pledge to formulate and introduce a specialized tourism project for Addu City.
Developed by CDC Consulting, the comprehensive five-year destination development strategy is accompanied by a detailed situational analysis report.
According to the Tourism Ministry, the plan is strategically crafted to not only enhance tourism in the region, but also to make a substantial contribution to the local economy of Addu, reflecting President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu’s commitment to transformative initiatives.
The plan also encompasses key presidential pledges to Addu city, including the establishment of 6,000 tourist beds, the creation of 10,000 jobs, the revitalization of Shangri-La operations, and the establishment of a seaplane hub within the first year of the presidency.
Tourism Ministry says the initiatives will transform Addu City into a thriving tourism hub, offering unparalleled opportunities for growth and prosperity.
The plan also outlines a range of developments, such as the creation of cultural village, wellness zones, marine protected areas, and hospitality school.
According to the Tourism Ministry, the initiatives not only aim to attract visitors, but also to showcase the rich heritage and natural beauty of Addu City, providing a unique and immersive experience for tourists and locals alike.
President announces a mega project to establish Island Council Secretariats in fifty islands within the year
Maldives stresses lack of funds for sustainable food
President rejects legislature to postpone Majlis election
Gov’t says 90% of prior fishing projects stopped
No attention to infrastructural development of councils in past 13 years: President
Maldives mark a significant increase in Chinese arrivals
Maldives lost funding from Kuwait due to former govt’s ‘carelessness’: President
Elections Commission grants approval to form Maldives Solidarity Party.
Parliament’s 06th May Terror Attack Report Highlights Defence Minister Mariya Ali Didi’s Negligence.
Former President Mohamed Nasheed revokes support for the current administration in an open letter.
Leaked documents show India refused to withdraw military personnel and helicopters from the Maldives even after their Visa’s expired.
Hiyaa flats- pigeon coops, negative stereotyping and lobbying.
President Abdulla Yameen officially calls for the removal of Indian military personnel in the Maldives.
COVID-19: Racism, Blame Shifting and Politicizing a Pandemic.
Sports7 days ago
Mbappe reported to have penned five-year deal with Real Madrid
Tech6 days ago
World’s largest clean energy corridor supplies China with electricity
Sports6 days ago
Preview: Much at stake for Barca, Xavi in Napoli trip
News6 days ago
Chance to switch plot in Giraavaru Falhu to elsewhere a ‘possibility’
Business6 days ago
No difficulty in purchasing onion from India: STO
Business6 days ago
Thai contractor to fund mega airport project in Thinadhoo
Travel & Culture4 days ago
Remarks by H.E. Ambassador Wang Lixin at the 2024 “Happy Chinese New Year” Cultural Performance
World7 days ago
Consensus reached over Afghanistan issue despite Taliban’s absence: UN chief