The Chinese government hailed the recent remarks of Maldivian Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdulla Shahid that the island nation will continue to support and work with China under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
The foreign minister had stated that the administration of President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih will continue the projects initiated in Maldives under the BRI, in an interview to Chinese news agency Xinhua last Thursday.
"China is the fastest growing economy in the world. All our neighbors are engaging themselves with China. The largest economies in the world are engaging with China. We will not be left behind in engaging with China," he was quoted as saying.
Spokesperson for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, Hua Chunying, applauded Shahid's comments in a press conference on Friday, stating that the foreign minister's remarks indicated the willingness of the new Maldivian administration to strengthen bilateral ties.
In the briefing, Hua stated that the two nations have cooperated on projects related to the livelihood of people, such as development of bridges, airports and housing, adding that it promoted the economic transformation and living conditions of Maldives.
"China is ready to work with the Maldivian new government to consolidate traditional friendship, better dovetail development strategies, further bilateral pragmatic cooperation and push forward mutual beneficial and win-win cooperation under the framework of the BRI, so as to constantly enrich the China-Maldives Future-Oriented All-round Friendly and Cooperative Partnership", the spokesperson said.