The President of Asian Development Bank (ADB) Takehiko Nakao has stated that although the tourism industry of the Maldives is flourishing in the international market, its benefits are not reaching the country and its economy.
Speaking at a press conference held jointly on Monday by ADB President Takehiko Nakao and Finance Minister Ahmed Ameer, Mr Nakao noted that every year the Maldives welcomes around 1.5 million tourists but the real gain of it is not seen in the country’s economic GDP.
Mr Nakao said that the issue was discussed extensively with President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih and Speaker of the Parliament Mohamed Nasheed.
He highlighted that policies need to be changed in such a way that fees can be generated from the tourism sector for the purpose and to ensure that resort development has a minimal impact on the environment. In addition to this, we have to change our policies to accommodate and increase more employment opportunities for Maldivians.
He also noted that the guest house business under the local tourism concept is a key instrument in delivering profits of tourism to the people and emphasized the importance of expanding the guest house business in the Maldives to ensure the growth of the economy and country.
Mr Nakao assured on his first visit to the Maldives that ADB would always assist the Maldives. In this regard, ADB will extend assistance of USD 120 million for the Thilafushi Hakata project — a three-year development plan for energy production and natural gas projects in the Maldives.
ADB is one of the largest financial institutions in the world that assists the Maldives. Since 1978, ADB has given US$ 315 million in assistance to the Maldives for different projects.
Source URL: Corporate Maldives