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Duration of uninhabited island allocation to councils to be increased to 25 years

Mariyath Mohamed
03 March 2024, MVT 09:50
The President speaks in Raa Atoll Meedhoo last night.
Mariyath Mohamed
03 March 2024, MVT 09:50

President Dr Mohamed Muizzu has said that the duration of handover of islands outside the jurisdiction of local councils which have been given to them for use will be raised from 10 to 25 years.

The President said that although the current announcement states the duration as 10 years, work is ongoing to extend the period by an additional 15 years.

"Then you can use that uninhabited island for quite a big investment. The uninhabited islands will be given for 25 years. And as the law stands, the duration can be increased even more. There is a chance to raise it even to 50 years," the President said.

In the regulation deciding to allocate uninhabited islands to be used to for public benefit even from outside the official jurisdiction of councils, 26 uninhabited islands are up for application. While all island councils were eligible to apply for these 26 uninhabited islands, the President assured that there will be more opportunities to do the same in future.

He said that there will be enough opportunities for each inhabited island of the Maldives to get an uninhabited island for its use in this manner.

The President assured that when islands are issued in this manner, the government will ensure the island in question is not already issued to a ministry, or other institution, or caught up in any form of legal proceedings.

The new regulations allow uninhabited islands to be leased to councils or private parties to be used for activities that will benefit the public, under the guidelines outlined in it. Activities allowed on islands given in this manner are:

- agricultural activities : growing plants or food

- as a godown

- to raise birds, poultry, or goats/cattle

- production of smoked tuna, dried tuna

- production of salted tuna

- production of dried sea cucumber as individuals

- aquaculture work

- to breed fish, to build grouper cages, conduct grouper fisheries

- to build 'dhoni' [boats]

- to conduct work and build workshops related to fibre, carpentry and brick laying work

- as a picnic island and provision of sea sports services

- preparation and sale of snacks and other light food

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