Remarks by His Excellency Abdulla Shahid, Minister of Foreign Affairs, at the Joint Press with the First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Serbia

First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Serbia, His Excellency Ivica Dačić, members of the Serbian delegation; members of the media,

Good morning.

It is an honour and a privilege, Minister, to be here in this beautiful and historic city of Belgrade today. This visit is indeed a remarkable milestone in our longstanding 47-year bilateral relationship.

Since the establishment of diplomatic relations, our relationship has been firmly grounded on the principles of mutual respect and understanding. I am pleased to note that this visit has brought renewed momentum to Maldives-Serbia relations and has fortified our existing cooperation.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Minister Dačić and I, just concluded bilateral talks, covering a range of topics in the bilateral and multilateral spheres. We discussed on possible areas of cooperation, including health, education and sports.

We signed a Memorandum of Understanding on bilateral political consultations, which is aimed at deepening our engagement and having periodic consultations to enhance our cooperation on areas of mutual interest. I expressed my firm commitment to working with Minister Dačić and the Government of Serbia to take our bilateral relationship to new heights.

On health, I requested the support of Serbia for possible projects, which would ensure the provision of timely, quality and much needed care for our people.

We also discussed the possibility of establishing a visa waiver agreement between the Maldives and Serbia. I strongly believe that this would increase people to people ties, promote tourism and generously add to the bilateral portfolio between our two countries.

Additionally, yesterday I also met with the Speaker of the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia, His Excellency Vladimir Orlić. We discussed the important role of parliaments to strengthen and promote democracy and enhance cooperation between our two countries. I was also delighted to hear from Speaker Orlić, of the decision to establish a Maldives-Serbia friendship group in the Serbian Parliament.

On the multilateral front, I am happy to note that Maldives and Serbia collaborate and continue to support each other on important initiatives at the United Nations. On this note, I would like to thank the Government of Serbia for the support provided, during the recent Maldives’ Presidency at the United Nations General Assembly.

I thank Minister Dačić for having me here in Belgrade, and for his keen interest to further advance our bilateral relationship. I am confident that our close cooperation and friendship will continue to flourish.

Thank you.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Fathulla Jameel Building, Malé, 20077, Republic of Maldives, | Tel Number: 00960 332-3400  |  Emergency Contact: 00960 798-3400