The Maldives Journal (TMJ) has learnt that the King of Saudi Arabia has still not responded to a letter sent by President Ibrahim Mohammed Solih requesting financial assistance as budget support. According to a senior official at Maldives Foreign Ministry, the letter was hand-delivered by Maldives Foreign Minister Abdullah Shahid in October last year. However, Saudi Arabia has not responded to the letter yet.
Saudi Arabia has helped the Maldives numerous times in the past, often giving millions of dollars in grant aid and millions as concessional loans. However, the relations between the two countries have deteriorated since President Solih assumed power.
President Solih's party, MDP, ran a hate-mongering campaign against Saudi Arabia in the past, accusing it of spreading religious extremism. Senior officials of the current administration, including Finance Minister Ameer, headed these campaigns. This has created a rift between the two countries, and Saudi Arabia has been hesitant in providing financial aid to the Maldives since then.
The Maldives is facing severe economic challenges due to mismanagement by the government, and the government is in dire need of financial support to revive the country's economy. The government has been reaching out to various countries and international organizations for assistance.