16 August 2014; Chinese President Xi Jinping today conveyed his Government's ‎commitment to propel bilateral relations with the Maldives to a higher ‎plane. Speaking at the bilateral talks with the visiting President of ‎Maldives, H.E Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom and the Maldivian ‎delegation, President Xi highlighted that China viewed the Maldives as a ‎special friend and neighbour in Asia. He extended a very warm welcome to ‎President Yameen and expressed his confidence that China-Maldives ‎relations would be further strengthened as a result of this historic official ‎visit to China by the Maldivian President.

‎In his remarks at the bilateral talks held at the Purple Palace of ‎Nanjing, President Yameen thanked President Xi and the Chinese ‎Government for the generous support and assistance extended to the socio-‎economic development of the Maldives over the years, in important areas of ‎focus. ‎
President Xi emphasised that the two countries had collaborated ‎successfully at key international forums, including the UN Human Rights ‎Council.‎

President Yameen noted that the Maldives had always been a ‎standing supporter of the One-China policy and the Five Principals of ‎Peaceful Coexistence. He also commended President Xi on his 21st Century ‎Maritime Silk Road. ‎

President Xi highlighted that the Maldives would feature among ‎the countries that are included within the Silk Road Sphere, and expressed ‎China's willingness to collaborate with the Maldives on key areas such as ‎the development of ports and on protecting the pristine environment of the ‎Maldives. Noting that China is today the top tourism market for the ‎Maldives, the Chinese President said that his Government would encourage ‎Chinese investors to establish "Chinese style" tourist resorts in the ‎Maldives, which would contribute to increasing Chinese visitor numbers to ‎the Maldives. ‎

President Yameen briefed his Chinese counterpart on his economic ‎vision and his desire to empower the youth. He outlined the key ‎developmental projects envisaged for commencement in the time ahead, and ‎emphasised that no project is as important or pertinent as the Male - ‎Hulhule' bridge. President Yameen expressed his satisfaction that the ‎interest of corporate China towards the bridge project and other key ‎economic manifesto projects. He went on to note that he desired in time, for ‎the new bridge to be known as the "China Bridge" to symbolise the friendly ‎ties between the two countries. ‎

President Xi thanked President Yameen for briefing him on his ‎economic agenda and assured that he would alert Chinese authorities to ‎collaborate closely with the Maldives in ensuring the key development ‎projects, including the bridge can be implemented with due urgency. ‎