Finance Minister Ibrahim Ameer stated that talks of sovereign default or bankruptcy regarding Maldives is political and described the occurrence of such conversations as depressing.
In a Tweet, Minister Ameer asserted that bankruptcy and Maldives are being used in the same sentences for political reasons to weaken the government and belittle the achievements of this administration. He added that the Maldivian economy is one of the fastest recovering economies post Covid-19 and the nation battled the pandemic in a more vulnerable financial state than it is today.
Ameer stated that despite the struggles, Maldives overcame the challenges under the guidance and leadership of President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih. He said that the government has always maintained complete transparency while admitting the challenges faced by the state and the financial data is always available for reference.
Ameer’s tweet came following the remarks made by former President and Speaker of the Parliament, President Mohamed Nasheed on Maldives declaring bankruptcy due to national reserve depletion. Nasheed stated that the remaining funds in the national reserve cannot sustain the need for basic necessities for Maldivians.
According to the statistics released by the central bank of Maldives, Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA), by the end of October, the national USD reserve held USD 499.6 million and only USD 105 million was available for utilization.
The available reserve of USD 105 million roughly translated to the cost of a single month’s import goods. Therefore, should the cost of oil increase within the global market, Maldives may not be able to afford basic necessities.
While Minister Ameer has continued to deny a possible state of sovereign default, one of the largest investment banks of the world, J.P. Morgan has estimated the complete depletion on the Maldivian national reserve by 2023. However, the government has collectively refused to accept the findings of the research division at JP Morgan, asserting that the report was unfounded and drafted by “a receptionist” of the firm.