Corporate Maldives Magazine

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Corporate Maldives | April 22


Spotlight Housing Development Corporation

In this issue: Maldives Ranks as One of the Lowest Scoring Countries in Global Economic Freedom Index


Ahmed Athif Deputy Managing Director of Housing Development Corporation

Trans Maldivian Airways Over the Years – What’s Next?


Ministry of Gender Launches the National Gender Equality Action Plan (GEAP)

_ Corporate Maldives “GOLD 100 GALA” to Be Held on June 9 at CROSSROADS Maldives


Corporate Maldives | April 22

AG E NT D E TA I L S Maldives State Shipping Company (Pvt) Ltd 3rd Flr, STO Trade Center, Orchid Magu, Male', 20188, Republic of Maldives General Inquiries: +960 3029200 Sales Inquiries: +960 7349700

| |

Documentation Inquiries: +960 7309700


Maldives Shipping Services Lanka (Pvt) Ltd No.33, Level 15, Park Land, Park Street, Colombo 02 General inquiries: Tel: +94 76 772 8725 Email: Sales inquiries: Tel:+94 71 232 5060 Email:

Corporate Maldives | April 22



Corporate Maldives | April 22

Managing Director & CEO Akhmeem Abdul Razzaq Director - Content Creation Mohamed Khoorsheed Director - Digital Strategy Ibrahim Areef Chief Design Officer Moothi Chief Operating Officer Ahmed Nasir Admin & Finance Ali Sageef Ibrahim Media & Marketing Zeek Ashraf Raaya Abdulla Fathimath Zeen Mohamed Aminath Suha Mohamed Fathimath Nashama Mohamed Mohamed Mizyan Raya Sajid Design & Art Direction Thoo Nazim Zaya Ahmed Hamdhoon W. Content Creation Kudie Maan Abdulla Enal Mohamed Rishwan

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Editor’s Note Welcome to the April 2022 edition of the Corporate Maldives Magazine, a bi-monthly print publication dedicated entirely to the business community of the Maldives. Our Corporate Maldives Spotlight this month is on Housing Development Corporation (HDC), the master developer for three pivotal islands in the Maldives: Hulhumale’, Thilafushi and Gulhifalhu. As part of our Corporate Maldives Spotlight, we highlight how HDC is developing the nation’s first smart city, as well as its exciting vision that stretches well beyond Hulhumale’. We also sat down to have a chat with Mr. Ahmed Athif, the Deputy Managing Director of HDC, to gain further insight into the company. Under our People segment, we take a look at the careers of Shubham Moondhara, the Head of Corporate Strategy and Business Development of TMA, and Mohamed Gasam, the Managing Director of FSM. Our cover story for this issue focuses on women’s empowerment, and the ever-growing need for gender equality in corporate leadership. As usual, our news segments touch on various industries and business sectors of the Maldives, including tourism, construction, banking, technology, trade, fisheries and agriculture, among many others. Happy reading!


Corporate Maldives | April 22




Corporate Maldives Spotlight: Housing Development Corporation

Government & Economy

Tourism & Aviation




Transport & Construction

Real Estate





Women’s Empowerment

Wellness & Beauty





Banking & Finance


Fisheries & Agriculture




Trade & Shipping


Environment & Sustainability



Corporate Maldives Events

Business Directory


Corporate Maldives Spotlight: Housing Development Corporation

Corporate Maldives | April 22

HDC – Going Beyond Hulhumalé Housing Development Corporation Ltd. (HDC) is a 100% state-owned enterprise formed by a presidential decree in 2009. Initially established as Hulhumalé Development Unit in 2001 with the mandate of undertaking the Hulhumalé development project, the organization has had a major role in fostering the development of Hulhumalé. Hulhumalé is the Maldives’ largest and most ambitious urban development project, with HDC in charge of overall planning. The culmination of the island nation’s effort to reimagine its focus towards being resilient, economically and environmentally, Hulhumalé was the idea of providing the citizens with a different environment from the capital city Male’. HDC has managed to achieve the milestone of managing the overall planning and building of the reclaimed land of Hulhumalé and making it the biggest and most ambitious urban development project in the Maldives. HDC is currently working towards completing the Hulhumalé project entirely by 2033 to become the

nation’s first sustainable venture with projects of hospitality, industrial, recreational, commercial and residential undertaken. As a result of this endeavour, opportunities on a scale never seen before in the country have been generated. As the Maldives’ first Smart City, Hulhumalé will offer a FIBRE OPTIC GPON network to replace the traditional cables used for ICT services, resulting in an improved quality of life for residents and the investors, a brand-new attraction. Environmentally sound transportation systems, as well as the adoption of green architecture and the creation of green energy inside the city, are scheduled to go into operation. With their experience in the field, HDC has initiated the "Go Beyond Hulhumalé" program, which aims to bring forward 23 years of experience in the planning and building of a smart and green city thereby contributing their knowledge across other regions of the Maldives. This initiative aims to support integrated planning efforts in urban development and other regions to help cities flourish sustainably. City councils, appropriate

Corporate Maldives | April 22

relevant authorities and HDC will collaborate to ensure a better life for the communities. As the master developer for three pivotal islands of the Maldives: Hulhumalé, Thilafushi & Gulhifalhu, the corporation will be focusing more on Thilafushi and Gulhifalhu in the years ahead. Thilafushi, the island’s potentiality, which was not identified until later, is now brimming with opportunities for Maldivian industrialists. While Thilafushi became an absolute solution due to the Male City’s high population density, resulting in overflowing garbage in the region, HDC is working towards making this island a complete solution for the need, and with HDC’s experience, they are formalizing a more systematic strategy for the island. Gulhifalhu, the half-moon-shaped island, embodies the buoyant economy of Maldives. It is located halfway between Thilafushi and Villingili. With the possibility of residential units on the books, the island is expected to become a major hub for the

Corporate Maldives Spotlight: Housing Development Corporation

Maldives’ economy soon. The island is ideal for industrial development because it is so close to the Maldives’ main port and international airport. The island promotes the separation of industrial and urban areas, allowing industrial uses to have a lower environmental and social impact. Gulhifalhu’s strategic location also provides a predominant space idyllic for localized environmental controls that are specific to the needs of an industrial area. HDC is expanding beyond Hulhumalé to become the Maldives’ largest urban development corporation, and to do so, the corporation must move forward and seek opportunities throughout the country. HDC has already begun the initiative with Fuvamulah City and is in productive talks with them to assist with their expertise in the city’s development.



Corporate Maldives Spotlight: Housing Development Corporation

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Mr. Ahmed Athif Deputy Managing Director of Housing Development Corporation

Mr. Ahmed Athif is the Deputy Managing Director of Housing Development Corporation (HDC), the master developer for three pivotal islands in the Maldives: Hulhumale’, Thilafushi, and Gulhifalhu. Our team sat down with Mr. Athif to find out more about HDC’s current projects and its exciting plans for the future.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Could you tell us about your career thus far? What has your experience been like at HDC? I come from a finance background. Since I joined HDC, I have been working in a key management role. It’s a diverse organization, where we work with personnel with various skills. We are currently going through a major transformation of the company. Previously, HDC was tasked with providing social housing, which is now undertaken by Fahi Dhiriulhun Corporation. HDC is currently a master developer, mainly focused on commercial developments.

Could you tell us about some of the major projects HDC is currently undertaking? Major projects in the last two or three years have been mainly focused on the Hiyaa Flats, targeted for a population of 40,000. They are 6,722-bedroom apartments being developed in phase two of Hulhumalé. Tenants have been moving in, so hopefully by next couple of months, it will be fully occupied. We are also focused on completing the remaining social infrastructure facilities in the area, which includes mosques, schools, hospitals, roads, parks, and other amenities. Another key project is the channel park that we have been developing, which divides Phase I & II. Additionally, there will be outdoor cafeterias, food outlets, social parks, including skate parks and other infrastructure developed in that area. We are also developing the islands of Thilafushi and Gulhifalhu, since the new administration decided that this also aligned with HDC’s work. Our focus is mainly on developing infrastructure projects, such as developing a road network in Thilafushi, as well as a planned land reclamation in the area. Vinares housing, located in Phase II, is another key project we are working on. It is mid-range housing with 1,344 units which are already under construction. Hopefully, by the end of this year we will be able to bring this to the market. We are also developing telecommunication infrastructure. As such, another key project is the fiber optic network in Phase II. This is considered to be a diversification project. All the ISPs are currently riding the GPON network developed by HDC in Hulhumalé Phase II, enabling them to provide faster service to the residents by reducing the connection time.

Corporate Maldives Spotlight: Housing Development Corporation

Another diversification project we are working on in Phase 2 is an integrated tourism project. Its main focus is to provide job opportunities and also a tourism component to small, medium and large businesses in the central area. It’s a very unique project, because we are not sticking a ‘one island, one resort’ concept like the rest of Maldives. Instead, we will have multiple hotel chains, boutique hotels and guesthouses all in this integrated development. This project will be rolled out in the upcoming quarter.

What would you consider to be the greatest milestone of HDC so far? Hulhumalé was reclaimed with the vision to solve the issue of high population density in Male’. People believe that Hulhumalé is a better choice than Male’, and with the connectivity with upcoming different categories of housing, we see that the main objective of company has been achieved over the years. Of course, there are areas in which we can still improve. Currently, we are working on improving the standard of living through smart solutions and infrastructure to make Hulhumalé a sustainable and Smart City.

COVID-19 has caused severe disruptions across the global economy. What challenges did HDC face and how did you overcome them? Since HDC’s main focus is on infrastructure development, the majority of materials are imported. A huge challenge then was reducing total disruption in the supply chains. All projects were delayed mainly due to shortage of materials and shortage of labor. During the lockdown due to COVID-19 restrictions, we had to stop certain projects for a certain period of time. To overcome that, we amended our schedules and were able to find alternative ways to carry out the projects. Now the projects that were on hold at that time have been resumed, and we are able to complete certain projects despite the delays caused by COVID-19.



Corporate Maldives Spotlight: Housing Development Corporation

HDC has recently initiated an Open Access Network deployment in Hulhumalé Phase 2. Could you tell us a bit more about this initiative? How will it benefit the residents and businesses of Hulhumalé? The vision for Hulhumalé is for it to be developed as a Smart City. And this Smart City initiative begins with smart infrastructure. Developing expertise in the telecommunications area is one key objective of HDC, as now with modern developments, reclamation alone is not enough. Supporting facilities are also necessary, which includes networks as well. The Open Access Network creates quick service provisioning, low operational costs from multiple service providers sharing the same infrastructure, and better maintenance as it eliminates the need for excavating and trenching roads. One of the main benefits for HDC as a developer is once the network is done, any ISPs can ride on the network, which will reduce the cost, and users will receive much faster delivery.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

What’s in store for HDC? What can we expect to see next? The new government vision is to go beyond Hulhumalé. You can see that the new administration is also working towards developing 4,000 to 6,000 additional housing units as well. In Hulhumalé Phase II, 7,000 Hiya Flats have already been completed and people are already moving in. One of our key objectives is to possess expertise and developing cities and, in that aspect, we foresee scope in developing other areas with that expertise. Another key development will be Thilafushi and Gulhifalhu, which are highly focused on commercial activities and can be integrated with central area development. So, we will be engaging in these key government initiatives, and working very closely with the administration to achieve government strategic goals as well. In the coming days, you will see major changes in the work we do as we achieve our goals.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Corporate Maldives Spotlight: Housing Development Corporation

Building the Maldives’ First Ever Smart City, Brick by Brick Hulhumale’, the reclaimed sibling of capital city Male’, is the culmination of the nation’s efforts to reimagine its focus towards being resilient, in both an economical and environmental sense. Often dubbed as a "city of hope", Hulhumale’ has accomplished, and begun a number of smart island initiatives. Over the course of two decades, the ambitious island has reached many smart city goals, proving the island’s vulnerability to climate change of little importance. Housing Development Corporation (HDC), a 100% government-owned enterprise, undertakes the overall planning and building of Hulhumale’. Currently working towards creating Hulhumale’ to become the nation’s first sustainable venture, the corporation undertakes projects of hospitality, industrial, recreational, commercial and residential in nature, while introducing new opportunities on a scale previously never seen before in the country. According to HDC, Hulhumale’ is developed with thoughtful consideration, for social, economic and environmental impact. Built for resilience, environmentally sound transportation systems are expected to come into operation, together with the introduction of green architecture and generation of green energy within the city, highlighting the initiative of developing the first ever smart city in the Maldives. What’s more, the city will introduce FIBRE OPTIC GPON network replacing the traditional cables used for the ICT services creating a higher quality of life for residents, and a brand-new attraction for investors. In Hulhumale’ Phase II, HDC has initiated an Open Access Network deployment which will pave way in terms of economic evolution, digitalization of government services, businesses and lifestyle of the residents of the island city. As such, this network serves as a digital solution that will transform the whole socio-economic outlook of the Maldives. Indeed, a high-speed network infrastructure is

essential to cater to current and future demand in any city, providing high speed internet, video, data, telephone and other network services. Stepping into the digitalized world, it is vital to develop high speed network connectivity in evolving cities. A wellrun network will provide numerous opportunities, not only by encouraging the growth of the digital economy but by providing smart services. The new Open Access Network will future-proof Hulhumale’; a network that has a higher capacity to deliver reliable connectivity with an ability to make huge leaps over time. The fiber infrastructure will give Hulhumale’ high speed internet and enable the opportunity to implement smart city applications such as waste management, smart parking and connected streetlights creating an attractive environment for both businesses and resident to thrive. Distinguished from rest of the islands of the Maldives, Hulhumale’ is the only island being developed as a smart and safeguarding city for all.



Corporate Maldives Spotlight: Housing Development Corporation

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Heydi Feydi – A Community Development Project by HDC Heydi Feydi is a community development project organized by HDC in order to create awareness, bring relevant solutions and to promote the development of a cultural, socially active and sustainable community. Heydi Feydi embraces the involvement of local and foreign SME roles as well as the community, universities and relevant NGOs. This project is a social movement which is mainly targeted to the youth of our community. There are three components which will take place during the project. MANSA is a talk series which is held quarterly to bring improvable changes to the community we live in. MANSA explores creative topics presented by professional speakers, who will be spreading meaningful ideas through storytelling followed by panel discussions.

The talk series will be featured on Soundcloud podcast, Facebook live updates, Twitter, LinkedIn & Instagram. HISSA is an annual event which will be held at the end of every year. Hissa’s mission is to seek broader solutions related to the community, by prioritizing and collaborating solutions which would support us in designing a sustainable future. The event will be featured on Facebook, Instagram & Twitter. Moreover, a SOCIAL MESSAGE SERIES consisting of video content with the goal of delivering the message of empowering our community as cultural, social and sustainable will be exclusively part of the Heydi Feydi project.


Corporate Maldives | April 22





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Government & Economy

Maldives Ranks as One of the Lowest Scoring Countries in Global Economic Freedom Index

Corporate Maldives | April 22

The Maldives has scored a score of 47.3 in the 2022 Index of Economic Freedom, making its economy the 161st freest this year. The Maldives is ranked 36th among 39 countries in the Asia–Pacific region, and its overall score is below the regional and world averages. After growing from 2017 through 2019, the Maldives’ economy contracted in 2020 and recovered in 2021. During those five years, economic freedom at first strengthened but then weakened significantly. Driven down by weak scores for fiscal health and business freedom, the Maldives has recorded a 3.0-point overall loss of economic freedom since 2017 and has fallen from the "Mostly Unfree" category to the "Repressed" category. Although the economy is lightly burdened by taxes, investment freedom and financial freedom are very anemic. Maldives’ economic freedom score is given based on quantitative and qualitative factors, grouped into four broad categories, or pillars, of economic freedom.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Government & Economy

Rule of Law


• Property rights in Maldives are limited. • The state owns most land and leases it to private owners or developers. • The judiciary is slow, politicized, often arbitrary, and subject to external influence. • Corruption is endemic at all levels of government. • The enforcement of laws remains inconsistent and targets the political opposition. •Some whistleblowers and journalists have been jailed.

• Upgrades to telecommunications infrastructure have been extended to outer islands, but some further upgrades were slowed by COVID-19, which also has contributed to widespread job losses. • About 70 percent of the labor force works in services. • In 2021, according to the finance ministry, the government subsidized more than 60 percent of the price of staples (rice, sugar, flour) and funded higher subsidies for electricity and fuel.

Government Size

Open Markets

• The Maldives government levies no personal income or corporate tax. • Bank profits are subject to a profits tax. • The overall tax burden equals 17.5 percent of total domestic income. • Government spending has amounted to 38.6 percent of total output (GDP) over the past three years, and budget deficits have averaged 11.9 percent of GDP. • Public debt is equivalent to 142.6 percent of GDP.

• The Maldives has two preferential trade agreements in force. • The trade-weighted average tariff rate is 12.5 percent, and nontariff barriers persist. • A new foreign investment code that still excludes several sectors from foreign participation and ownership was adopted in 2020. • The financial sector is shallow and dominated by banking. • Costly credit and limited access to financial services impede development of a vibrant private sector.



Government & Economy

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Average Wages of Government Employees Increase Within a Month

The President Decides to Establish a National Digital Identification System

Government wage statistics publicized by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) shows that the wages of government employees have increased within one month.

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, upon recommendation from his Cabinet, has decided to establish a National Digital Identification System. Deliberations on a paper proposed on the matter by the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, and Technology was held at the Cabinet meeting held this afternoon at the President’s Office.

The Monthly Government Wage Index (MGWI) report of January 2022 shows that the average wages of employees working in all sectors of government combined, has increased by 1.6 percent between December 2021 and January 2022. The MGWI increased by 1.4 percent within this period, from 101.0 to 102.4. According to NBS, the MGWI is calculated and published on monthly, quarterly and on annual basis. All the components of compensation paid to the government employees have been included in the compilation of this index including overtime, except for Ramadan Allowance. The data also reveals that in January 2022, a quarter of the employees receive a basic salary of less than MVR 5,000, and 18 percent receive a basic salary of MVR 5000. A total of 39 percent of employees receive a basic salary range of MVR 6,500 to 9,999 while 14 percent receive a basic salary range of MVR 10,000 to 17,999 while approximately 4 percent receive a basic salary of more than MVR 18,000. Moreover, of the MVR 430.9 million wages paid to government employees in January 2022, 66 percent is paid to public administration sector workers while 13 percent is paid to education sector workers. 21 percent is paid to the health sector.

Establishing and adopting a National Digital Identification System is carried out under the administration’s National Resilience and Recovery Plan (NRR) 2020–2022. The system would be developed and maintained by the National Centre for Information Technology (NCIT) and the Department of National Registration (DNR). The new system would enable the adoption of biometric technologies in DNRs’ identity management systems and the introduction of contactless identification cards. NICT and DNR would also develop digital identification applications for smartphones and extend the use of the digital identification platform to the private sector.

Corporate Maldives | April 22



Government & Economy

Corporate Maldives | April 22

UNDP Signs an MoU with the Ministry of Economic Development The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in the Maldives represented by Enrico Gaveglia, and the Ministry of Economic Development represented by Minister Fayyaz Ismail, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to provide technical assistance for strengthening evidencebased policy making and enhancing investments in Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the Maldives. The MOU reaffirms the long-standing partnership between the two entities, building on several areas of support through the decades, and lays

the foundation for accelerated and focused development cooperation under UNDP’s new Country Programme Document for the Maldives 2022-2026. Signing the MoU on behalf of the Ministry of Economic Development, Minister Fayyaz Ismail stated, “This new initiative is an opportunity to focus on strengthening policy and strategic decisions through improved research and data governance. The program will also contribute to economic diversification efforts and create an inclusive and fostering environment for entrepreneurship development.”

Corporate Maldives | April 22

The MoU specifies four main priority areas of cooperation under this join-effort, including: • Strengthening data management and governance for evidence-informed policy making and providing strategic economic advisory to the Government. Through this, UNDP and the Ministry aims to strengthen human and institutional capacity to formulate innovative, open-policy research supporting economic diversification, trade, investment, and inclusive livelihoods. •Explore climate investment opportunities and collaborate to develop SDG Investment Maps in Maldives. •Provide technical assistance on blue economy diversification and seek opportunities for transforming the national economy towards an ocean-based economy. •Supporting Women’s Entrepreneurship and Engagement for Sustainable Green Economic Recovery, focused on up-skilling Women’s Development Committees (WDCs), youth, women leaders and community organizations to build and sustain green and digital entrepreneurship, climate resilient business models, green financing and mainstream environmental sustainability practices into business practices.

Government & Economy


With the signing of the MoU, UNDP’s support to the Ministry will be enhanced by bringing together its extensive global and regional expertise in developing data-driven, innovative research capabilities. UNDP will partner with the Ministry to develop similar capacities and seek additional partnerships for strengthening knowledge exchange. “The MoU signifies UNDP’s willingness and commitment to partner with the Ministry in a new policy space where strategic innovation and a future-proof set of capabilities, such as the practice of governing with data, are built and generate meaningful policy options that accelerate the ambitions of the Strategic Action Plan of Government,” said Enrico Gaveglia, UNDP Maldives Resident Representative, speaking at the signing ceremony. This collaboration between UNDP and the Ministry of Economic Development will establish a valueadded joint effort in enhancing the parallel implementation of the development agenda of the Government of Maldives, and the SDGs focused on policy formulation and economic diversification.


Government & Economy

MIRA Collects MVR 1.4 Billion as Tax Revenue in February Maldives Inland Revenue Authority (MIRA) has collected MVR 1.4 billion as tax revenue in February 2022. The monthly revenue statistics published by MIRA shows that this is an increase of 40.1% compared to the same period last year and 17.6% higher than the projected revenue for the month. MIRA stated that the main reason for the increase in revenue in February 2022 is attributed to the increment in tourismrelated revenues such as GST, Income Tax, Green Tax, Tourism Land Rent and Airport Tax and Fee. According to MIRA, tourist arrivals to the Maldives increased by 43.1% in January 2022 compared to January 2021. GST accounts for the largest share of the total revenue collected by MIRA in February 2022. This amounts to 69.1% or MVR 972.10 million. Income tax contributes in second place with 9.8% or MVR 138.21 million.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Other top revenue contributors include: Green Tax: MVR 91.44 million (6.5%) Airport Service Charge: MVR 51.99 million (3.7%) Airport Development Fee: MVR 44.85 million (3.2%) Other taxes and fees: MVR 107.98 million (7.7%) The revenue collected in February 2022 also includes USD 63.09 million.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Government & Economy

British High Commission Officially Opened in Maldives

A British High Commission has been officially opened in the Maldives. The diplomatic mission was opened by Maldivian State Minister for Foreign Affairs Ahmed Khaleel and UK Minister of State for South and Central Asia, the UN and the Commonwealth Lord Tariq Ahmad of Wimbledon. At the opening ceremony, Maldivian Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid delivered a special video message, in which he stressed that the decision to establish the diplomatic mission reflects the mutual desire to further strengthen UK-Maldives relations. He also welcomed the United Kingdom as the first European country to officially open a mission in the Maldives.



Tourism & Aviation

Corporate Maldives | April 22

MMPRC Markets the Maldives at International Media Marketplace in Germany

Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC/ Visit Maldives) has participated in leading Global media platform Travmedia’s International Media Marketplace (IMM), held in Germany. The Maldives is being represented at the fair on behalf of MMPRC by the PR agency designated for the German market, Kaus Media Services. This B2B event took place on 8th March 2022. Travmedia’s International Media Marketplace (IMM) is held in different markets and is a leading global networking event, connecting the travel industry with top journalists, editors, influencers and broadcasters. This is the 10th edition of the annual event, which is unrivaled for relationship building and networking opportunities. The IMM event held in Germany would provide exhibitors the opportunity to hold discussions and form alliances with travel trade partners from Germany, Austria and Switzerland. This year, IMM events are expected to attract over 5665 exhibitors with an estimated 10,500 media personnel attending and covering the events.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

The main purpose of participating in this event is to promote the Maldives as a top of the mind destination and to update the German, Austrian and Swiss travel trade with the latest travel guidelines to the Maldives. Through the event, MMPRC showcased the geographical advantages of the scattered islands of Maldives, allowing natural social distancing making Maldives one of the safest destinations for tourists. Through this event, MMPRC was able to market our products, including resorts, hotels, guesthouses/homestays and liveaboards, and the unique experiences available for tourists in the Maldives to the German, Austria and Swiss markets. MMPRC’s participation in IMM is in line with the strategy to maintain destination presence in this market and to efficiently promote various segments of tourism to travel trade professionals. This strategy aims to assist the destination to increase future bookings and arrival figures from Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The Maldives welcomed over 1.3 million visitors in 2021, out of which 94,784 (or 7.2% market share) was attributed to visitors from Germany, Austria and Switzerland. MMPRC has been holding several activities to maintain destination presence and increase arrivals from these countries. This includes joint campaigns with Let’s Go Tours, Connoisseur Circle, Imagine Magazine and Bentley Club Magazine. MMPRC also held events with Manta Reisen, Travel Impressions (American Express), TUI Germany & Austria, Condor, as well as a special media event for the Swiss & Austrian markets. Many similar activities are planned ahead for this market for 2022 as well. As the company responsible for marketing the Maldives as a destination abroad, MMPRC carried out 260 different marketing activities in 22 global markets last year, including fairs, roadshows, familiarization trips, marketing campaigns, webinars, and interviews. The greatest testament to the success of these activities came late last year, as the Maldives secured the title of ‘World’s Leading Destination’ (among several other accolades) at the 2021 World Travel Awards, globally recognised as the hallmark of industry excellence. This is the second consecutive year that the Maldives had successfully earned this prestigious title, a shining testimony of the trust placed in the ‘magic of Maldivian hospitality’ by travelers from all over the globe. This year also celebrates an exceptional year to visit the Maldives – the Golden Jubilee celebration of tourism in the Maldives kicked off earlier last year with plans to conduct new and exciting activities throughout the year. MMPRC has planned over 60 in-person events for the year 2022, including 11 fairs, roadshows and events scheduled for just the first quarter.

Tourism & Aviation



Tourism & Aviation

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Tourism & Aviation


George Corbin and his Daughter Receive the First Gold Tier of Maldives Border Miles

George Corbin, one of the pioneers of tourism in the Maldives, and his daughter Georgia Corbin, the first child tourist to the Maldives, receives the very first Abaarana (Gold) Tier of the world’s first destination loyalty program, the Maldives Border Miles. The prestigious Abaarana Tier was presented to them by the Minister of Health, Honorable Ahmed Naseem, during an exclusive event held at the VIP Lounge of the Velana International Airport. Honorable Minister was the person Mr. Corbin met at the Maldives Embassy in Sri Lanka during 1971 and they later worked together to introduce tourism in the Maldives. George Corbin was an Italy based diving tour operator then and has greatly contributed to the tourism industry ever since. George Corbin and his daughter arrived the Maldives on 15th February 2022, to participate in

some of the celebratory events to mark the Golden Jubilee of the tourism in the Maldives. It was on 16th February 1972, Mr. Corbin brought the first group of tourists to the Maldives, mainly journalists and divers. They all were fascinated by the untouched natural beauty of the Maldives, the archipelago of the scattered islands and the wonder underneath the sea. Abaarana Tier offers the most privileged offers to Maldives Border Miles members. The grandest offer to this Tier includes free VIP services. They are also eligible for great discounts from all the partners of the Maldives Border Miles.


Tourism & Aviation

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Trans Maldivian Airways Over the Years – What’s Next?

History In the 1970s, the Maldives as a destination was struggling with infrastructure problems. Adventurous travellers would visit the Maldives only to explore islands in close proximity to Male’. The first resorts in Maldives opened in 1972 and the transfer was through speedboat. After the emergence of the first resorts, the idea of more convenient and faster travel options was being pitched. TMA began in 1989 as Hummingbird Island Helicopters, a firm that operated a helicopter fleet. The first air transfer service to resorts began in 1989. However, there were many major infrastructure issues in Maldives which made it difficult to fully establish and transition to helicopter air service. Lars Erik Nielsen travelled to Kuredu and realized how sick the passengers were getting due to

the voyage. He understood the need for a more convenient air travel. He started Maldivian Air Taxi (MAT) with only two aircrafts in 1993. This was a transformative milestone in Maldivian history that changed Maldivian tourism for good. The company grew over the years where now over a million passengers are transferred every year. In 1997, with the succession of seaplane operations, Hummingbird Island Airways introduced seaplane services and was later renamed Hummingbird Island Airways. The transition to a seaplane-only fleet was completed in 1999 and another year later, the name was changed to Trans Maldivian Airways (TMA).

Corporate Maldives | April 22

In February 2013, MAT and TMA partnered with Blackstone, one of the world’s leading investment and advisory firms under the name Trans Maldivian Airways (Pvt) Limited (TMA). In December 2017, the company was acquired by Bain Capital Private Equity, a global private equity firm headquartered out of the US, in association with Tempus Group, a Chinese tourism-focused conglomerate, from the current shareholders led by Blackstone. The Maldivian tourism industry owes credit to TMA for providing seamless connectivity to resorts and providing expert care for tourists who use their service. Now, sitting at the top of the game, TMA is considered the backbone of the tourism infrastructure in the Maldives.

Present Day TMA is presently owned by a consortium led by Carlyle Group along with Kingstreet Capital Management and Davidson Kempner Capital Management. The company sits comfortably at the intersection of Tourism & Aviation, having made significant contributions to both industries. TMA is currently nearing a fleet of 60 aircraft and currently operates to over 80 resorts across 14 atolls. More than 300 TMA flights take to the Maldivian skies every single day, totalling to more than 100,000 trips per year. Close to a million passengers are transported every year further solidifying Trans Maldivian’s pivotal role in the Maldivian Tourism Industry. The success of the Maldivian tourism industry can be greatly attributed to TMA’s dedication to providing safe air travel- connecting resorts all over the country.

What’s Next? TMA is now geared up to move to the new seaplane terminal, a state-of-the-art project carried out by the Maldivian government. The New Seaplane Terminal is poised to increase the overall efficiency of the seaplane operations. Also, with numerous resorts establishing lounges at this new terminal, it will further elevate the overall service being offered to the guests who travel to the island nation from across the world and choose seaplanes as their preferred mode of transfer In the long term, the Maldivian tourism industry is arguably on a trajectory of immense growth, especially after the pandemic. As tourist arrivals and the number of new resorts grow over time, TMA aims to continuously evolve and improve its services to cater for the increased demand.

Tourism & Aviation



Corporate Maldives | April 22

Tourism & Aviation

Maldives’ Largest Virtual Consumer Travel Fair to be Held in July 2022 WIN OVER


Maldives Virtual Tour Expo (MVT Expo) is a virtual consumer travel fair held on maldivesvirtualtour. com offering unbeatable holiday offers across the Maldives for a period of 1 month. This is going to be the largest virtual consumer travel fair of the Maldives reaching over 10 million travelers across the globe. This fair will feature over 1000 virtual tours from 50 different islands across the country. The expo is scheduled to be held from 1st to 31st July targeting different market segments across the globe. Throughout the expo, Maldives Virtual Tour will be giving away 50 free holidays for the lucky winners. Visitors attending the MVT Expo will stand

1st - 31st July 2022

the chance to join a lucky draw and win a free holiday from different resorts and local islands. Furthermore, visitors will be able to enjoy special offers to resorts through the MVT Expo. This fair will reach people from across the globe from the comfort of their homes and allow them to experience Maldives like never before by simulating real travel situations. Visitors will be able to take 360 tours of different resorts and islands in the Maldives through the virtual expo.


Corporate Maldives | April 22



Tourism & Aviation

Corporate Maldives | April 22

SriLankan Airlines Takes on Summer with Significant Frequency Increase Subcontinent include the operation of an extra weekly flight each to Gan, Maldives and Lahore, Pakistan.

SriLankan Airlines has geared up for a busy Summer 2022 by increasing the number of scheduled flights by 40 per cent to match pre-pandemic levels and meet the growing demand for air travel as the industry continues to recover. The frequency increases will come into effect across SriLankan’s network of online destinations with the start of the airline’s summer flight schedule. The new schedule will facilitate smoother operations for the airline and offer customers greater flexibility, convenience and connectivity. One of the most significant changes is in SriLankan’s operations to India, which were scaled down considerably at the height of the pandemic. India recently reopened their skies for commercial passenger flights after two years of closure. In celebration of this encouraging development, SriLankan will be nearly doubling the number of weekly flights to India to over 100. Other planned frequency increases to cities in the Indian

SriLankan is further planning to match the weekly number of flights to Abu Dhabi, Riyadh, Muscat and Seychelles in the Middle Eastern and African regions to its pre-pandemic level of operations. Frequencies to certain destinations in the Far East and Oceania would also be gradually increased in the coming months. Daily flights have already been introduced to Kuala Lumpur, while daily flights will be operated to Melbourne by May and to Bangkok and Jakarta by July of this year. Further, an additional weekly flight has been scheduled for Narita starting from July 2022. New destinations are also part of the plan and commercial passenger flights to Seoul, Korea are to be launched in May 2022. SriLankan Airlines earns much needed foreign exchange for Sri Lanka, with close to 85 per cent of the airline’s revenue being generated in foreign currency. Furthermore, the airline is as dedicated as ever to help restore and grow the Sri Lankan tourism industry to and beyond pre-COVID-19 levels. The increase in operations is based on demand forecasts and is expected to generate increased revenues from traffic into and beyond Colombo through the airline’s extensive network. " SriLankan is steadily returning its commercial flight operations to normal as the recovery of global travel gathers momentum. We are complementing the operational growth with enhancements to our product and services including the onboard menu, the website and the launch of new destinations. We look forward to renewing our relationships with old friends and to introducing Sri Lankan hospitality to many new guests," stated Richard Nuttall, Acting CEO of SriLankan Airlines.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Tourism & Aviation

Manta Air Commences Addu Operations on 24th February

Maldivian Begins Scheduled Flights to Ratmalana, Sri Lanka

Maldives Virtual Tour Expo (MVT Expo) is a virtual consumer travel fair held on maldivesvirtualtour. com offering unbeatable holiday offers across the Maldives for a period of 1 month. This is going to be the largest virtual consumer travel fair of the Maldives reaching over 10 million travelers across the globe.

The national airline, Maldivian has begun direct flights to Colombo International Airport, Ratmalana (CIAR), located in the suburbs of Colombo, Sri Lanka.

This fair will feature over 1000 virtual tours from 50 different islands across the country. The expo is scheduled to be held from 1st to 31st July targeting different market segments across the globe. Throughout the expo, Maldives Virtual Tour will be giving away 50 free holidays for the lucky winners. Visitors attending the MVT Expo will stand the chance to join a lucky draw and win a free holiday from different resorts and local islands. Furthermore, visitors will be able to enjoy special offers to resorts through the MVT Expo. This fair will reach people from across the globe from the comfort of their homes and allow them to experience Maldives like never before by simulating real travel situations. Visitors will be able to take 360 tours of different resorts and islands in the Maldives through the virtual expo.


Until now, flights from Maldives operated to Sri Lanka’s Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) only. The flight has begun after the Colombo International Airport, Ratmalana (CIAR) which had been Sri Lanka’s first international airport, reopened for international flights after 55 years. The inaugural flight from Male’ to Colombo landed at the CIAR to a celebratory water cannon salute on 27th March. A ceremony was held at the airport to welcome the passengers who arrived on the airport to celebrate the first international flight to land at the airport in half a century. Maldivian announced that it will be operating three weekly flights to Ratmalana, on Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays.


Transport & Construction

Corporate Maldives | April 22

MTCC Inaugurates L. Gan Thundi Harbor Development Project

Two Out of the Six Airport Projects to Be Completed This Year

Maldives Transport and Contracting Company (MTCC) has officially commenced the L. Gan Thundi Harbor Development Project.

Minister of National Planning, Housing and Infrastructure, Mohamed Aslam has stated that the government targets to open two out of the six airports which were announced last December by the end of this year.

MP Mohamed Wisaam inaugurated the physical works commencement of this project. CEO Adam Azim and senior officials of MTCC participated at the inauguration ceremony. Scope of works the project include construction of a 360m breakwater, a 310m quay wall, a 2501 sqm harbor pavement, a bridge and installation of streetlights. This project is valued at MVR 24.71 million. In the past 3 years, MTCC has carried out a number projects of harbour construction, land reclamation and shore protection. Maldives Transport and Contracting Company (MTCC) was incorporated on 18 December 1980 as the first public company in the Maldives. Since its inception, MTCC has positioned itself as the leading marine and land transport provider and civil and marine constructor.

In December, the government had announced the development of airports in HDh. Makunudhoo, Dh. Bilehfahi, B. Thulhaadhoo, Th. Vilufushi, F. Magoodhoo and R. atoll. In response to Vilufushi MP Hassan Afeef’s enquiry on a parliament sitting regarding the project progress, Minister Aslam responded that the Ministry has received the proposals for all six airports. However, the agreement stage has not been reached yet. Moreover, the Minister voiced that an agreement has been signed to dredge land to build the airport in Magoodhoo. Although the project agreements have not been signed as of yet, he assured that the government has been utilizing the state budget in order to accomplish as much of the projects as they possibly could. To this he added, two airports are to be opened later this year and the land reclamation for Magoodhoo Airport will be completed by the end of the upcoming year. The Ministry in December announced plans to seek financial assistance for the development of domestic airports worth USD 133 million (MVR 2 billion) under the ‘cross-subsidy’ model in six islands of the Maldives.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Transport & Construction

Bison Maldives Appointed Project Management Consultancy Firm for Resort Development in Tanzania Bison Maldives is a leading resort development firm situated in the Maldives. Established as a company on 24th October 2002, it is currently involved in a number of businesses. With two decades of building expertise Bison Maldives Group has successfully accomplished the development of the luxury resorts such as Cocoon Maldives, You & Me by Cocoon, as well as properties for the Atmosphere group. The Bison Group played a key role in the evolution of real estate property development in the Maldives and went beyond with the new projects outside the country, in Africa, promoting the synergy between ‘human’ and ‘environment’ while creating the rich living spaces that are comfortable and efficient. After numerous successfully accomplished

projects, Bison Maldives has been recognized as a leader in its field, and was appointed as the main project development consultancy firm for Resort Development Project on Bawe Island, Zanzibar, Tanzania in collaboration with Azemar Tour Operator Company. Azemar Tour Operator Company is one of the biggest tour operators from Milan with over 20 years of experience and is a long-time business partner of Bison Maldives. The group consists of Gold Zanzibar Beach House and Spa, Azemar S.P.A (Italy), Cocoon Maldives (Lhaviyani Atoll, Maldives) and You and Me Maldives Resort (Raa Atoll, Maldives).



Transport & Construction

Investing in the Future of Tourism Bawe Island offers the perfect getaway for travellers looking for some calm and serenity. A 10-minute boat ride from Stone Town, Bawe Island offers guests the luxury of privacy while keeping the quaint allure of Zanzibar close at hand. Adding a touch of class and sophistication to any travel itinerary, Bawe Island is an oasis in paradise. Keeping with the One Island One Resort concept, the focus of the development will be to a limited part of the island. The resort will be fully selfsustaining with its own power generation, water desalination, sewage treatment, harbour and reef protection, laundry, and kitchen and on-site staff accommodation facilities. The vision for the Bawe Island Resort is to seamlessly integrate the natural beauty of the island into the living spaces of the property. Furthermore, all villas will be built using an innovative prefabricated system. This will help minimize the on-ground impact during construction and development. Staying green, Bison will be using solar power as the back-up power source for the island. Additionally, the water supply and sewage treatment facilities will help reduce the overall impact on the surrounding ecosystem and allow for wastewater to be recycled for irrigation and gardening. Gold Zanzibar together with the professional approach by Bison Group Maldives, has a plan to become partially energy self-sufficient by 2022 by using solar panels in each room to produce energy for the hot water and air conditioning. The entire construction and assembly of the resort will be planned to minimize the environmental footprint and ecological disturbances on the island.

Corporate Maldives | April 22


Redefine Your Unboxing Experience Corporate Maldives | April 22

Parcel Delivery

Mail Delivery

E-Commerce Parcel Delivery

Bulk Cargo Delivery

End-to-end Logistics Solutions


Real Estate

Corporate Maldives | April 22

5 Things You Need to Know About Commercial Real Estate

Owning a commercial real estate property might prove to be one of the most lucrative investments you’ve ever made. This sector of real estate is a completely different beast than residential properties, and comes with an entirely different set of strategies you need to apply in order to become successful. The outcome depends on how prepared you are to deal with what’s ahead. If you’re thinking about investing in commercial real estate, here are five things you’ll need to know to increase your chances of survival.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Definition of Commercial Real Estate Commercial real estate is a broad term that is used to describe all real estate that isn’t residential or vacant land. Consisting of properties such as factories, office spaces and shops, this type of real estate can be broken down into three main categories – office, retail, industrial. The reason why this matters to a potential investor is because these different types tend to require different management, and can return the investment in varying ways. Therefore, the first thing you need to learn is how to pick the right type of commercial real estate to suit your specific needs.

Making Your Investment Unlike residential real estate which is valued based on comps from neighbouring houses, commercial real estate is valued based on its cashflow, or how much income it can produce. Make sure you do your fair share of research; invest some time and effort, talk to owners of similar properties. It is also advisable to concentrate on one type of investment at a time, whether it is an office, retail or industrial. As each transaction required undivided attention, this will ensure that you always find the best deal possible.

Rental Returns As with all investments, returns can be different depending on the surrounding circumstances. While residential properties typically return up to around 4% or 5% a year, returns for commercial property investments can be much more significant depending on the location, market conditions, trends and quality of the building.

Real Estate


Securing Tenants Securing tenants for commercial properties is a bit more challenging than residential properties. Although everybody needs a place to live, not all businesses need a physical space to operate. Additionally, businesses tend to be less flexible when it comes to spacing demands; if your property does not offer what they need, they are likely to look elsewhere. However, once you do have a tenant for your commercial property, you will likely have them for a while. The leases tend to be longer, and moving a company is generally a lot harder than moving a house.

Plans for the Future The last thing you need to consider is your plans for the future. How do you foresee this working out? Do you intend on renting out the property to earn a steady income, or do you intend to demolish it and build something else in its place? Or are you perhaps waiting for its value to rise so you can sell it off for a better price, or are you planning on operating your own business there? Your long-term goals and vision for your property sometimes makes all the difference in your property management plans.


Corporate Maldives | April 22

Shubham Moondhara Head of Corporate Strategy and Business Development of Trans Maldivian Airways

Shubham Moondhara is the Head of Corporate Strategy and Business Development of Trans Maldivian Airways (TMA), the world’s largest seaplane operator. Our team sat down to have a chat with Shubham to delve deeper into his career so far, and how TMA has evolved and grown over the years.


Corporate Maldives | April 22

Could you tell us a bit about your career at TMA thus far? I joined Trans Maldivian Airways in 2015, as the Head of Corporate Strategy and Business Development. Presently I’m handling reservations, scheduling, on day backend operations, terminal services, sales and marketing, as well as the corporate strategy verticals. My journey has been very dynamic. I’ve seen Maldives grow and evolve in the last seven years. During this period, there are more than 70 resorts that have popped up in the different islands in this nation. So as an organization, we have had to cater to those resorts. In the same duration, we’ve had two ownership changes, and we continue to evolve even now. It has been an immense learning process, so in those terms, the journey so far has been very dynamic.

What do you think TMA does differently from your competitors? What sets you apart from the crowd? If you look at how TMA came into existence, it is because of the resorts that have sprung up over the years – it is a chicken and egg situation. In the early days, tourism was heavily concentrated near the airport in the Male’ Atoll. This presented an opportunity to take tourism beyond this central region. It began with Lars Erik Nielsen who first started with the concept of seaplanes, and TMA can be credited with taking the tourism beyond the Male’ Atoll. If you look at us today, our prime USPs as an organization would be our flexibility and our consistency. If you look at a typical airline, they would have a particular number of aircrafts and have X number of seats. The objective would be to maximize the revenue, by filling up the seats. The more seats you can fill up at the highest price, the more revenue you make, right? But at TMA, it’s exactly the opposite. What we do is we aggregate the demand from all our resort customers, and based on that, we create a schedule every day. If you look at the last 20 years, no single day has had the same schedule. This is because we cater exclusively to our partner resorts, based on their demand. This differentiates us from all our competitors. The other biggest factor that differentiates us is the passion of our team. We have evolved a lot in the last 25 years, but what has remained constant is our passion to make a difference, our passion to serve the customer in the best possible way.

COVID-19 has caused severe disruptions across the global. What are some of the challenges that you have faced, and how did you overcome them? I think COVID-19 was very different from anything that anyone has ever experienced, in the sense that, normally when you have situations and problems, you usually do have some books or case studies that you can always refer to or take guidance from. COVID-19, however, was unprecedented. No one knew what the next step would be or should be. No one knew when it was going to go away. For us as an airline, it was extremely important that we understand where we were headed. Our objective was to be there for Maldives when it reopened. I believe a lot of credit has to be given to the government of Maldives who ensured that the international borders opened when they did. All stakeholders worked in tandem to ensure that guests were given a very safe haven during the pandemic. At TMA, we really overhauled our operations in terms of providing a very safe and hygienic travel for all our passengers. It was a tough time because the reality was that, on ground, we had zero revenue for many months, even though we had operational costs just as any typical airline. At the same time, we took the initiative to step up our maintenance on our aircrafts. We took that time to maintain our fleet because we were very optimistic that there was going to be light at the end of the tunnel and we wanted to be well prepared. When the tourism eventually started to rebound, and resorts started to ramp up, TMA was there.

What do you consider to be the biggest success of the company so far? As an organization, the way we measure success is probably slightly different. These days, a lot of people tend to measure success as a quantitative output or as a quantitative achievement. For us, the success is our journey, and how have continuously evolved over the last 25 years. If you have a particular task, you can succeed at that in a thousand ways. But for us to continuously succeed in that task is because of the processes that are in place. And these processes give us the confidence that we can really deliver to our customers. For us, this whole journey of evolution,




where we started with two aircrafts, and have gone up to around 60 aircrafts today – this journey itself is a success of TMA.

How is TMA helping to develop the human resources in the Maldives? If you look at when we initially started out, the number of pilots and engineers were minimal in the Maldives, so most of our human resource capital was from outside the country. But today, more than 65 percent of our crew consists of locals. In fact, the majority of our engineers, mechanics and technicians are now local. What we have done, it’s called knowledge transfer. We ensured that local talent was grown to a level that it can sustain itself. We take pride in the fact that we run these programs, where we continuously develop the local population. What we believe is that you don’t need everything or all the skills in a person when they join – you can help a person evolve if he or she exhibits the ability to learn. Every talent, whether it’s a local or expat has that ability. So at TMA, we focus a lot on how we can grow and nurture the local talent. As a matter of fact, the verticals that I head, have predominantly local staff and I am proud to be working with all of them.

What’s in store for the future at TMA? What can we expect to see next? I think the future is very exciting. In the short term, we are looking forward to our move to the new seaplane terminal, which is a state-of-the-art project carried out by the government of Maldives. The new seaplane terminal will not only increase the efficiency of seaplane operations but it will also further elevate the perception of seaplanes as a mode of transfer. With many resorts opting to have private and dedicated lounges for the guests, it will accentuate the overall guest journey. Of course, the move to the new space will be very challenging. We have grown so much in the old seaplane terminal for the last 25 years, that it’s almost in our DNA to work here. Now, suddenly we’ll be moving somewhere else, but I’m sure it’s going to be fantastic and we’re looking very forward to it.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

In the longer term, I think Maldives is on a cusp of big step-up growth. The pandemic really put Maldives on the global map. Now almost every person in the world knows what the Maldives is and aspires to come here. Once these projects like the international terminal, the new seaplane terminal are completed, Maldives is going to have a stepup growth in terms of tourist arrivals. A lot of new resorts are coming up as well, and again, TMA’s role here is to be the infrastructure. To continuously grow and improve our services for these exciting upcoming resorts is what we are planning and preparing for!

Corporate Maldives | April 22

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The Marina @ Crossroads Maldives

Enjoy the Iconic Mud Crabs & Fresh water prawns of Sri Lanka flown in twice a week

open daily from: 17:30 - 23:00

For Reservations +960 741 2722

a direct outpost of one of asia’s 50 best restaurants, currently ranked at no. 35 is now open in the maldives!


Our presence here is influenced by the beauty of Maldives,

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specializing in Sushi & Sukiyaki


open daily from: 17:30 - 23:00

For Reservations +960 781 2583

A direct outpost of Nihonbashi, Sri Lanka listed on the Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants from 2013 - 2018


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opening hours: 17:30 - 23:00 (closed on Tuesdays)

A Steak Restaurant with a Unique Grill that reaches 750°C

For Reservations +960 747 6688

We proudly serve Westholme Wagyu with a 4-5 Marbling Score




Corporate Maldives | April 22

Mohamed Gasam Managing Director Fuel Supplies Maldives

Mohamed Gasam is the Managing Director of Fuel Supplies Maldives (FSM), a subsidiary of State Trading Organization. Our team sat down with Mr. Gasam to delve deeper into the company history, and the various milestones it has achieved over the past two decades.


Corporate Maldives | April 22

Could you tell us a bit about how FSM came into establishment?

How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected your operations?

FSM began its operations in the year 2000, with a mere fleet of about 4 small barges. The company was founded as part of a scheme by State Trading Organization (STO) to choose private companies to form partnerships within specialized lines of services. In this case, it was the need for a unique fuel distribution system that triggered the constitution of FSM.

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic which shook the global economy to its core, FSM too had to bear the brunt of its impacts. One of the main market segments of our fuel supplies is the resort segment. When the international borders closed last year, many resorts had to shut down. During that time, we delivered minimal fuel just for their day-to-day operations, as demand for fuel fell steeply. We had to deal with a lot of losses.

STO, the colossus of trade in the Maldives involved in the import of oil, gas and kerosene, had no major position with regards to the distribution back then. However, STO had an ambition to facilitate a promising business environment by partnering with private entities, and invited most of the distributors for a screening process. Through this, Vara Maldives and Royal Enterprises were selected, and as a result of the partnership between the three entities, FSM was born.

Compared to its early days, could you describe the FSM fleet now? FSM’s fleet stands strong with 18 barges and 4 other vessels. The company mainly carries fuel via the sea, reaching every nook and cranny of our island archipelago. Compared to the early days of its operations, the strength of FSM’s fleet is much more robust. It was made even more so after the acquisition of Mt. Alihuras, which boasts a capacity of 8.5 million liters of fuel. Ownership of the vessel was transferred by STO on the occasion of FSM’s 20th anniversary, in December 2020.

What would you consider to be FSM’s biggest milestone thus far? In recent times, during the years leading up to 2019, FSM was not generally depicted as profitable. As a subsidiary of STO, the reason for not showing profits was due to the parent company’s policies at the time. In 2019, due to management-level changes in the parent company and a higher volume of deliveries, FSM began to receive a much higher level of profit. In fact, we experienced a record number of fuel supply deliveries that year, and were in a very strong position overall. Our recorded profit was a staggering MVR 59 million, so it was indeed a very successful year for us.

Since the border reopening in July 2020, resorts have begun to open, and the road to recovery is on the horizon. The resort market is getting much better, which is a positive point to note. One really remarkable aspect is that, in spite of all the challenges we faced in 2020, we made sure our fuel deliveries were prompt. No island has experienced a loss of electricity due to not getting fuel this year, and I believe that is a testament to all the hard work and effort our team has put in, despite the odds. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic which shook the global economy to its core, FSM too had to bear the brunt of its impacts. One of the main market segments of our fuel supplies is the resort segment. When the international borders closed last year, many resorts had to shut down. During that time, we delivered minimal fuel just for their day-to-day operations, as demand for fuel fell steeply. We had to deal with a lot of losses. Since the border reopening in July 2020, resorts have begun to open, and the road to recovery is on the horizon. The resort market is getting much better, which is a positive point to note. One really remarkable aspect is that, in spite of all the challenges we faced in 2020, we made sure our fuel deliveries were prompt. No island has experienced a loss of electricity due to not getting fuel this year, and I believe that is a testament to all the hard work and effort our team has put in, despite the odds.

What do you envision for the company’s future? Depending on the recovery of the coronavirus situation, my vision is to see the company reach new heights. With our combined efforts, the goal is to reach the revenue and profit levels we had in 2019, and even surpass them.



Corporate Maldives | April 22



Corporate Maldives | April 22




Corporate Maldives | April 22


New Appointments

Khalid Hassan M A Al-Hamadi

Hussain Zareer

Aminath Shaayan Shahid

Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer Ooredoo Maldives

Director Finance Ooredoo Maldives

Director of Marketing and Operations Mediflex

Ahmed Shareef

Adam Mohamed

Mohamed Mailan

Managing Director STELCO

Managing Director Maldives Post Limited

Head of Public Relations MTCC

Hassan Kalaam

Mohamed Azmeel

Mohamed Aalim

Director of Islamic Banking Bank of Maldives

Director of Sales Villa Hotels and Resorts

Group Director for Talent and Culture Villa Hotels & Resorts


Corporate Maldives | April 22


Visha Mahir

Sanjay Maniku

Mahjoob Shujau

Chief Operating Officer Universal Resorts Management

Chief Operating Officer Universal Resorts Management

Managing Director MACL

Ibrahim Thoha

Ibrahim Rasheed Aboobakuru

Uz. Mohamed Aneel

Deputy Managing Director MACL

State Minister for Tourism

State Minister for Islamic Affairs

Abdulla Falah Shareef

Mohamed Nasih Rasheed

Hassan Mughnee

Deputy Housing Minister

State Minister for Youth, Sports and Community Empowerment

State Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Technology


Women’s Empowerment

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Here’s Why Having Women in Leadership Roles is More Important Now Than Ever The topic of women’s empowerment is on the tips of everyone’s tongues these days, especially with the recent marking of International Women’s Day. And while the celebration of capable female leaders and entrepreneurs is at the forefront of our agenda, it is disheartening to note that the pool of such women in top positions remains painfully limited. According to the Global Gender Gap Report released by the World Economic Forum, the percentage of women in companies’ board of directors is above one-tenth in only 43 countries, of which the percentage is above one-fifth in only 22 of those nations. Numerous obstacles stand in the way of women’s career progression. For instance, women being held to higher standards, a lower number of successful female role models, as well as prejudice and stereotypes. Women also tend to bear the brunt of familial obligations, and inflexible hours

at the workplace can act as a deterrent for them to rise in company ranks. Perhaps most damaging, however, is the erroneous belief refuted by the data that women are apparently less effective leaders than men. And yet, there is overwhelming evidence that diversity in leadership is good for business. Leadership skills exhibited by women managers are strongly correlated to organizational success factors, such as retaining talent, customer satisfaction, employee engagement and the bottom line. Another large-scale investigation found that women outperform men on measures of motivating others, fostering communication and producing high-quality work. While women leaders can bring about several positive qualitative changes, business analysts are just beginning to quantify the concrete benefits that women in such roles can spur. According to a

Corporate Maldives | April 22

paper by the Peterson Institute for International Economics, companies that hire 30 percent or more of women in corporate leadership roles (such as C-Suite executives, CEO, or corporate board members) are more profitable. They reportedly achieve increased net margins compared to companies with fewer women in leadership. Not only that, but women bring to the table a whole different mindset and attitude. The female brain is naturally wired for long-term strategic vision and community building, and this is exactly what we need to birth our future. The emergence of women leaders can become an unstoppable force for good in the world. In fact, we’re now seeing more and more examples of such leaders emerging from across the generations to cross-weave their knowledge and drive for change. In an ideal world, it shouldn’t matter whether it’s a man or a woman running things. People should

Women’s Empowerment

always be appointed on the basis of merit, on their ability to do the job right. However, more still needs to be done to give all women the best possible chance of rising to the top alongside their male peers. Whether it be tackling the societal stigma around working women, or creating adequate opportunities for women at the policy-making level, we must all actively take it upon ourselves to empower one another and ensure equality regardless of gender.



Women’s Empowerment

Corporate Maldives | April 22

6 Maldivian Women Win Top 50 Award by Women in Management Six Maldivian women have won the ‘Top 50 Professional & Career Women Award’ by Women in Management (WIM), a professional women’s organization based in Sri Lanka. The recipients were given their awards during a special ceremony held in Shangri-La Hotel in Sri Lanka, in January. While only Ms. Abidha Ismail Ali was able to attend the event physically, the awards of the other recipients were accepted on their behalf. This 11th edition of WIM’s awards was held in collaboration with International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Australian government. This is the third year the awards have been held with a category dedicated to Maldives.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Women’s Empowerment

Winners of the Top 50 Award from Maldives are:

Entrepreneur of the Year: Abidha Ismail Ali

Career Achiever of the Year: Aishath Jennifer

Professional Role Model of the Year: Uza Aisha Shujoon

Climate Action Award: Aishath Hudha Ahmed

Woman with a Cause: Dr Fathimath Nazla Rafeeq

Inspirational Woman of the Year: Maimoona Aboobakuru



Women’s Empowerment

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Ministry of Gender Launches the National Gender Equality Action Plan (GEAP)

Ministry of Gender, Family and Social Services (MoGFSS) has launched the National Gender Equality Action Plan (GEAP), formulated in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in the Maldives, with the generous support of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) of the Government of Australia. The GEAP is a framework which outlines the Government of the Maldives’ policy targets and

strategies relating to gender equality, for the five-year period 2022 – 2026. It sets out realistic strategic goals that will help achieve key milestones in national priority areas on gender equality, as well as fulfilling international commitments towards gender equality, including achieving the targets of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the recommendations from the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and Universal Periodic Review (UPR).

Corporate Maldives | April 22

The GEAP was developed in fulfilment of the requirements under Article 42 of the Gender Equality Act (Law No. 18/2016), which requires the adoption of a National Policy on Gender Equality (GEP) and a National Gender Equality Action Plan to ensure the effective implementation of the Law within set timelines. "Removing the structural barriers for women in the society is imperative for us to make the muchneeded advancements in gender equality and fulfil our obligations under the Gender Equality Act, as well as our international commitments. It is also vital that a concerted and coordinated effort be made, to establish a strong framework for measurable actions to achieve gender equality," stated H.E. Ms. Aishath Mohamed Didi, Minister of Gender, Family and Social Services. The newly launched GEAP is a derivative of the GEP, developed by MoGFSS in partnership with UNDP Maldives and ratified in September 2019. Both the GEP and GEAP include a framework of actions for the attainment of five policy goals in the following emphasised areas: 1. Leadership and Governance: ensuring the equal participation and equitable representation of both women and men in governance and leadership positions 2. Economic Empowerment: ensuring the equal participation of women and men in economic development, engagement, and empowerment 3. Institutional Gender Mainstreaming: ensuring the capacity-building of relevant government institutions to address the specific needs of women, men, girls and boys. 4. Gender Based Violence: ensuring greater personal security of families and reduced violence against women, men, and children 5. Access to Justice: ensuring equal opportunities for access to justice for women, men, girls, and boys. Australian High Commissioner to Maldives, H.E. David Holly said that the global recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic "offers us the chance to build back better, with women at the

Women’s Empowerment

center of response and recovery efforts. Like the Maldivian Government, Australia has a steadfast commitment to promoting gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls, particularly in the Indo-Pacific region." In welcoming the launch, the High Commissioner said that the GEAP "encourages each one of us with an interest in a sustainable and prosperous future for Maldives accountable for considering gender in the way we achieve this future, and holds us to account to our own promises." The National Steering Committee, chaired by President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, will be overseeing, and providing guidance to ensure the effective implementation of the GEP. The Committee will consist of representatives across all sectors of the Maldives and will be supported and advised by relevant technical groups. The GEAP will mainstream gender into the Government’s work across different sectors, enabling state actors, private sector companies, civil society organisations and gender advocates to translate the Gender Equality Law and Policy into actions. "The launch of GEAP marks a ground-breaking and positive shift in power and perspective and opens a new chapter in advancing gender equality. The monumental conclusion comes at a critical moment as UNDP Maldives gears to deliver our offer of support for the country for the next five years, with bold gender equality commitments in alignment with all the SDGs, including the empowerment of women and ensuring their meaningful representation and participation, particularly at the decision-making levels and in sectors dominated by men. We are thankful for and rely on the continued investments, commitments and energy from our ecosystem of partners to ensure faster progress for women and girls than we have seen before, and ensure no one is left behind," said Enrico Gaveglia, UNDP Resident Representative to the Maldives. Following the launch, UNDP Maldives will be working together with the MoGFSS to support the roll-out and implementation of the Gender Equality Action Plan.



Wellness & Beauty

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Nada Clinic Launches Biologique Recherche for the First Time in the Maldives

Speaking at the launching event held on 14th March, founder of Nada Clinic, Fatimath Nada stated:

" Biologique Recherche is exclusively available in a handful of resorts, spas and clinics around the world. We’re very happy to welcome them here in the Maldives, at Nada Clinic and Nada Salon. I always aim to bring the best for my community, so this right here is another milestone for us."

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Salon Maldives Pvt Ltd and Nada Clinic have introduced renowned French luxury skincare brand Biologique Recherche for the first time in the Maldives. Nada Clinic’s new addition is one of the many highend brands now available for direct purchase from the clinic and salon. Along with the vast range of products available for every skin concern, Nada Clinic is also the host for many skin treatments readily available in the hands of its Biologique Recherche trained aestheticians. All aestheticians are properly trained by the team of Biologique Recherche, with refresher trainings conducted every 3 to 4 months. The fruit of four decades of experience, the Biologique Recherche methodology is based on unique and personalized skincare protocols adapted to the Skin Instant of each individual. The treatments for face, body, and scalp — equally suitable for both men and women — comprise of three principal stages: Assessment, Initializing and Treatment. Before the treatment, the Biologique Recherche expert carries out a thorough dermo-cosmetic

Wellness & Beauty

diagnosis using the Skin Instant Lab system and includes a visual analysis, a questionnaire, and the taking of measurements, to allow a treatment protocol to be devised that precisely matches your skin’s needs. The sophisticated technique of VisioLab gives even more finely tuned results, thanks to a high-definition image and scientific analysis of your face. The treatment protocol begins with individualized preparation of the epidermis, followed by the application of products with the highest concentration of active ingredients, to "recondition" the epidermis and help enhance its potential for self-regeneration. When applied in line with the Biologique Recherche methodology, the products balance, hydrate and revitalize the epidermis as required by each Skin Instant. The active ingredients take effect gradually, skin quality improves, and the complexion becomes radiant. With the introduction of Biologique Recherche in the Maldives, Salon Maldives and Fatimath Nada have further elevated the Maldivian beauty and aesthetic industry. Treatments and products that were once only available internationally are now available right here in the Maldives.



Wellness & Beauty

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Award Winning Diving and Excursion Dhoni - Island Hopper 50


Wellness & Beauty

Corporate Maldives | April 22









Corporate Maldives | April 22


Villa College Opens Applications for May 2022 Intake

Leading tertiary education provider, Villa College has opened applications for the May 2022 intake. Villa College has opened applications for a total of 122 courses. They include 16 Masters level courses, 9 Post-Graduate Diploma courses, 35 Bachelor’s Degree level courses, 26 Diploma level courses, 17 Foundation courses, 12 Certificate 3 level courses and a Certificate 2 level course. In addition to ACCA knowledge level, skill level and professional level, students have the opportunity to undertake the ACCA Accelerator course and BSc in Applied Accounting (Honours) of Oxford Brooks University in the UK as well. The courses newly opened for applications include online courses, hybrid (online and face-to-face)

courses and face-to-face courses. Villa has opened applications for courses in areas such as IT, Computer Science, Teaching, Shari’ah, Law, Tourism and Hospitality, Business Management, Aviation Management, International Business, Economics, Accounting and Finance, Banking and Finance, Marketing, Engineering Research, Nursing, Psychology, Public Health, Interior Architecture and Design. These consist of Villa College’s own courses, and Master’s and First Degree courses by the University of the West of England. The courses will begin in May at the QI campus in Male’ City as well as campuses in Villa College regional campuses.


Corporate Maldives | April 22

NADA CLINIC ADVANCED AESTHETICS & COSMETOLOGY CENTRE Boutique Dermatology | Cosmetic Gynecology | Wellness 332 2772 | 723 2772 nadaskinclinic | Nada Clinic H. Gaamathi, Ameenee Magu, Male, Maldives


Corporate Maldives | April 22

Banking & Finance

Mojay Global Holding to Launch the First Digital Bank of Maldives

Headquartered in Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), Mojay Global Holding Limited will launch its fintech project ‘Digital Bank of Maldives (DBM)’ in the Republic of Maldives. The Dubai based Investment Holding Group has submitted to the Governor of the Monetary Authority of Maldives – H.E. Ali Hashim – the Digital Bank of Maldives application on 23rd of February 2022. With digital transformation being a core part of DBM’s strategy, the bank will be fully automated and thus eliminate the need of bureaucratic and time-wasting processes in the Bank-Client relation. To provide convenient banking services, DMB will follow a simple registration system with remote account openings in a few minutes, instant loan applications, personal payments, and refined bulk payments allowing users to transfer to multiple beneficiaries from a single account. In addition, the digital bank will be integrated with enhanced security features like biometrics, outof-band authentication, device management, card tokenization, data encryption, two-factor authentication, transaction confirmation via OTP, fraud detection system, and eSignatures. The launch of DBM will result in the growth of local banks in Maldives from the current 37.5% to 44.4%. With the Maldives as the primary market, DBM will expand its services in other regions such as the UAE, Brazil, India, and the USA – where the group is already present. This fintech project

will also push innovative financial services and solutions that will benefit the younger generation of entrepreneurs and SMEs. It will also enable the young population using smartphones to maintain user-friendly relations with the bank at competitive rates. In addition to this, DBM has a cost-efficient business model that will offer its clients attractive rates. Through a JV in the form of external asset managers with a prestigious Swiss Bank, DBM will have access to competitive interbank borrowing rates in Euro and USD, benefiting local banks, companies and projects in the Maldives. Furthermore, as a digital bank, it may provide critical sources of direction and guidance on digital transformation in the Maldives, thus further promoting the potential positioning of the bank locally and internationally, including the offering of new and innovative services and carbon credit initiatives. Commenting on the project, Raul Silva, CEO and Managing Director of Mojay Global Holding Limited, said: " Technology and Fintech are two of the main business verticals of Mojay Global Holding group. Our leadership and teams understand how and in what direction technological transformations will change the core of the banking and finance industry for many years to come. Moreover, the Republic of Maldives is an emerging market and rapidly adapting to newer, advanced technologies that will prove beneficial for the economy in the long run. "

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Banking & Finance

First National Obtains License to Operate its First Fund Product

The Capital Market Development Authority (CMDA) has issued fund registration to First National Money Market and Savings Fund Private Limited on 28th February 2022, which is the first fund product of First National.

The fund primarily will invest in a portfolio of government securities to ensure repayment guarantees to investors. The funds investments will be restricted to instruments with maturities of less than one year.

Marketed as First National Money Market and Savings Fund, is a close-ended investment fund, registered with CMDA in compliance with the regulatory requirements under Regulations on Registration and Management of Investment Funds: Regulation no: 2015/R-57.

As a return enhancement strategy, the fund may invest in securities that are of good credit quality based on the First National’s internal rating framework, according to Chief Investment Officer, Abdul Haleem Abdul Latheef of First National.

Speaking to Corporate Maldives, Hassan Mohamed, Managing Director of Money Market and Savings Fund said: "Through our fund, investors can earn attractive risk-adjusted returns. Our Money Market and Savings Fund product will be an attractive alternative for people, families and businesses to preserve and grow their savings." As the Investment Adviser of the fund, First National will administer and manage the fund. It is expected that the fund will generate returns in excess of 5% per annum for the investors.

Further, Hassan Mohamed, Managing Director of the fund, acknowledged the continued support from policymakers, industry regulators and wellwishers in making this a reality within a very short span of time. The Managing Director informed Corporate Maldives that First National Money Market and Savings Fund will be open for subscription soon.



Banking & Finance

BML Announces Positive Changes to International Transfer Requests

Bank of Maldives (BML) has announced that, as part of the bank’s efforts to improve the quality of services provided to its customers, positive changes have been brought to the international transfer (TT) via internet banking. In this regard, the changes brought to the International Transfer Service are: Attaching multiple documents Request to purchase US dollars required for TT TT charge to be determined by selecting account TT process receives confirmation receipt in new format BML has decided to stop accepting international transfer services via email with effect from April 1, 2022. The bank encourages customers to access international transfer services through internet banking instead.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

MMA Urges Public to Be Wary of Ponzi Scheme

Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA) has urged the public to be wary of rising fraudulent schemes run on social media platforms. In a statement, MMA said it has been notified of a fraudulent scheme run on social media promising large, immediate profits in return for an investment. MMA said this is a Ponzi scheme, where funds from existing investors are used to pay new investors. MMA further stated that the funds collected from investors under such schemes are used for the personal uses of the people running the schemes and would result in major losses to investors as soon as the cycle of the scheme is broken. MMA added even the banks will not be able to return the funds invested in such a scheme if the operators of the scheme do not return the funds. Therefore, MMA urges the public to be cautious regarding such schemes, and not to take part in them.

Corporate Maldives | April 22



Corporate Maldives | April 22


Discussions Ongoing Regarding Starlink Access in Maldives: Minister Shauna

The Minister of Environment, Climate Change and Technology Aminath Shauna has revealed that discussions with Elon Musk’s SpaceX regarding providing Maldives with access to high-speed internet through the Starlink satellite internet constellation are ongoing.

According to Starlink’s website, the company expects to provide internet coverage in Maldives in the year 2023

According to the Environment Ministry, the meeting with SpaceX was held virtually on 13th February. It focused on the company’s plans to provide highspeed, low-latency broadband internet across the world using advanced satellites. Minister Shauna, who was summoned to the Parliament in early March, was asked by Velidhoo MP Mohamed Abdulla Shafeeq with regards to when Maldives was expected to receive Starlink coverage. While Shauna stated that SpaceX had asked the Environment Ministry not to disclose the details regarding the meeting at this time, she added that discussions with the company remained ongoing. Shauna reiterated that the government did not have any plans to block Starlink in Maldives. According to Starlink’s website, the company expects to provide internet coverage in Maldives in the year 2023. To connect to the Starlink satellite service, users will need to purchase a special kit that includes Starlink, a wifi router, cables and base, in addition to paying a monthly fee.


Corporate Maldives | April 22

Ooredoo Maldives and Meta Partner Up to Enable Prepaid Recharges on the Popular Social Media Platform

Ooredoo Maldives has announced that its customers can now make recharges and buy Add-ons via Ooredoo Quickpay on the world’s leading social media platform, Facebook. Ooredoo Maldives partnered with Meta to provide this service to enable easy access to its services through commonly used platforms such as Facebook Mobile Center, other than its official digital channels. " Facebook is a widely used platform in the Maldives to connect with people, to stay informed and even for entertainment. Hence with this partnership, our Facebook Prepaid users can now recharge via Facebook and continue to enjoy the platform. It is our great pleasure to continue working with our partner, Facebook to introduce innovative solutions and expand access to our services and enhance our customer digital experience," said Ooredoo Maldives Chief Commercial Officer, Hussain Niyaz. Ooredoo Maldives has also previously partnered with the world’s leading social networking site, Facebook and introduced Text-Only Facebook, a version of Facebook that allows customers to connect to Facebook for FREE. With this services Ooredoo mobile users with any data subscription, were able to access a basic version of Facebook and Facebook Messenger with zero balance and no data charge with just a tap of a button.

To recharge or buy an Add-on via Facebook: Log in to Facebook and go to the Menu Select Settings & Privacy Select "Mobile Centre – Ooredoo Maldives" and accept Terms & Conditions. Select Recharge Now and confirm the details.




Corporate Maldives | April 22

Dhiraagu to Connect Maldives to the Latest Global Super-Highway SEA-ME-WE 6 Submarine Cable System

Dhiraagu has entered into a contract with a consortium of 13 global telecom and tech companies to connect Maldives to the global super high-way SEA-ME-WE 6 (SMW6) submarine cable system. This cable system is planned to connect South-East Asia, the Middle East, and Western Europe at eleven countries from Singapore to France and is expected to be completed by Q1 2025. SMW6 is a 19,200 km long submarine cable system with a minimum transmission speed of 100Tbps, using the latest undersea cable technology. This cable system, will provide direct access to key Internet Exchange Points (IXPs) and Data Centres (DCs) from South-East Asia to Europe. This investment by Dhiraagu will significantly strengthen Maldives’ International connectivity, improve quality and resilience of its services to consumers, businesses and fuel future growth of digital services across the country. With the growing demand for digital services, this addition to the existing submarine cable systems is an important step towards making the Maldives a global digital hub and strengthening the digital infrastructure of the country. It gives increased confidence to customers and investors looking to host their services in the Maldives. Additionally, it will enable Dhiraagu to further explore the potentials of emerging technologies such as 5G, artificial intelligence and virtual reality.

" We are delighted to be a partner of SMW6 consortium and achieve this important milestone in the development of our telecommunication services in the Maldives. This is a significant investment that will bring immense benefits to the nation, our customers and shareholders. The SMW6 cable system will provide us direct connectivity to multiple key locations across the world, which will help reduce latency, improve quality and reduce costs of Dhiraagu’s internet services," STATED ISMAIL RASHEED, CEO & MD AT DHIRAAGU.

Corporate Maldives | April 22


Digital Terrestrial Television Broadcasting Network Development Project Launched in the Maldives

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, on 29th March 2022, inaugurated the " Digital Terrestrial Television Broadcasting Network Development Project". The ceremony was held at the PSM studio in Television Maldives Building. The Digital Terrestrial Television Broadcasting Network Development Project is supported by a free grant from the Japanese government. The efforts to establish a digital television network was initiated in February 2022. The project set for completion in 2024 would ensure coverage for 90 percent of the population and provide eight highdefinition channels for free. The Digital Terrestrial Television Broadcasting Network Development Project has stopped providing analog signals to 92% of the Maldivian population since 1979. By the end of the project, opportunities will be opened for the first time to terrestrially provide signals to such a large population for PSM as well as the private broadcasters. The most notable feature of this

network is its ability to reach out to the populace in case of a natural disaster such as tsunamis and provide other information through data broadcasting. Although the Government of Japan agreed to commence the project in 2020, the project was commenced on February 12, 2022, as project was halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The project is expected to be completed within the next 18 months. The Japanese government will spend more than USD 22 million on this project and the Maldivian government has decided to invest an additional MVR 57 million in the project as well. Under the project, transmitting and retransmitting sites will be established in 20 regions of the Maldives. The islands are Ha, Dhidhdhoo, HDh. Kulhudhuffushi, Sh. Lhaimagu, N. Manadhoo, R. Ungoofaaru, B. Eydhafushi, Lh. Hinnavaru, K. Vilimale’, K. Maafushi, ADh. Dhangethi, V. Felidhoo, F. Nilandhoo, F. Feeali, Th. Dhiyamigili, L. Gan, Ga. Nilandhoo, GDh. Fiyaoree, GDh. Gadhdhoo, Fuvahmulah and S. Hithadhoo.




Corporate Maldives | April 22

New Subsea Cable System IAX to Connect the Maldives Directly to India & Singapore

Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. (Jio), India’s largest 4G and mobile broadband digital service provider, will land the next generation multi-terabit India-AsiaXpress (IAX) undersea cable system in Hulhumale, Maldives. The high capacity and high-speed IAX system will connect Hulhumale’ directly with major internet hubs in India and Singapore. The Minister of Economic Development, Hon. Uz Fayyaz Ismail, speaking about the launch of the Maldives’ first international cable, said: " This is the first stride towards enhancing our connectivity infrastructure and opening vast opportunities for our people through providing secure, affordable and high-quality services. We also aim to diversify our economy and establish ourselves as a key communications hub in South Asia. Aside from economic development, this will accelerate social development through high-speed internet access throughout the Maldives allowing us to attain the equitable development we seek." " Today’s global economy is driven by low-latency broadband, connecting people, businesses, content, and services. IAX will not only connect Maldives to the world’s content hubs, but it will also support the explosive growth in data demand expected from the new initiatives being launched by the government of Maldives," said Mathew

Oommen, President, Reliance Jio. " Jio is very pleased to be working with the government of the Maldives to help realize this ambition by providing high-quality, terabit capacity supporting Web 3.0-capable internet services. " The IAX system originates in Mumbai in the west and connects directly to Singapore, with branches including additional landings in India, Malaysia, and Thailand. The IndiaEurope-Xpress (IEX) system connects Mumbai to Milan, landing in Savona, Italy, and includes additional landings in the Middle East, North Africa, and the Mediterranean. IAX is expected to be ready for service end-2023, while IEX will be ready for service in mid-2024. These high capacity and high-speed systems will provide more than 200Tb/s of capacity at speeds of 100Gb/s, over 16,000 kilometers. Employing open system technology and the latest wavelength switched RoADM/branching units ensures rapid upgrade deployment and the ultimate flexibility to add/drop waves across multiple locations. IEX and IAX together will be one of the most important developments in telecommunications infrastructure in this decade, linking India, Europe to Southeast Asia, and now the Maldives.

Corporate Maldives | April 22


Copier Plus – Sole Distributor of BROTHER & TOSHIBA E-studio Products in the Maldives!

Copier Plus Pvt. Ltd is a total solution provider for copier, printing, copying, facsimile, labeling, sewing machine and embroidery related products based in the Maldives. Established in 2004 as Copier Plus, the company has been providing total solutions for corporate businesses and government since its inception. Copier Plus is also the sole distributor for BROTHER & TOSHIBA e-studio products in the Maldives. Printing, copying and facsimile services are unavoidable business expenses for many, hence, Copier Plus aims to offer the best products and services to its clients. While maintaining a consistent and reasonable margin, they offer clients a fair price with exceptional service. As the sole distributor for BROTHER brand products, clients can choose from several models of the award-winning, affordable, state-of-the-art, monochrome or colour laser printers from the

brand. BROTHER printers are extremely versatile and reliable. They’re often faster than other types of printers and can generally produce large documents cheaper compared to other printers. They provide complete printing solutions for home and office. The TOSHIBA multi-function copiers (MFPs) available at Copier Plus are super-fast and efficient too. The easy-to-use and customizable touch-screen user interface allow the product to fit perfectly with the business’s workflow. Having a compact design and advanced security protections, these copiers provide the best the internationally renowned brand TOSHIBA has to offer. Together with the products, Copier Plus also offers the services under the warranty together with an annual service or comprehensive agreement. They take pride in being able to provide a custom solution for business needs.



Corporate Maldives | April 22

Fisheries & Agriculture

MIFCO Launches Ramadan Promotion with MVR 100,000 Grand Prize

MIFCO has launched the "Fasmeeru, Emme Meeru" Ramadan promotion on 27th February 2022. The promotion will run until 31st May. According to MIFCO, the grand prize of the promotion this year will be presented to the winner as cash, which is a change brought at the request of many customers. The 1st place winner of the promotion will be awarded MVR 100,000. A BML gift card of MVR 5,000 will be given to weekly lucky draw winners of the promotion every week. Customers who spend above MVR 200 at any of the six MIFCO outlets will be eligible for the lucky draw. The coupons received this time must be submitted via an online portal after scanning the QR code. MIFCO’s promotion will be held in two MIFCO outlets in Male’, and the stores in Hulhumale’, Addu, Kooddoo and Felivaru.


Corporate Maldives | April 22

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Trade & Shipping

Maldives Records Rise in Exports and Imports in February 2022 Maldives has recorded a significant rise in both exports and imports in February 2022, compared to the same period last year. As per the monthly statistics released by Maldives Customs Service, Maldives exported MVR 309 million in commodities during the month of February 2022. This is a 29 percent increase compared to the same period last year. Major exported commodities include MVR 149 million in frozen skipjack or stripe-bellied bonito, MVR 25 million in skipjack tuna, and MVR 17 million in yellowfin tuna.

TOP EXPORTING COUNTRIES: - Thailand: MVR 144 million - UK: MVR 19 million - Germany: MVR 18 million - India: MVR 17 million - France: MVR 8 million Meanwhile, Maldives had imported MVR 3.8 billion in commodities in during the month of February 2022. This is a 39 percent increase compared to the same period last year.

TOP IMPORTING COUNTRIES: - Oman: MVR 621 million - UAE: MVR 613 million - India: MVR 509 million - China: MVR 442 million - Singapore: MVR 311 million Maldives Customs Service further recorded a revenue of MVR 325 million last month, which is a 27 percent increase from that of February 2021.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Trade & Shipping

MPL Signs with HDC to Lease Land for Container Storage Expansion at Hulhumale’ Intl Port

Maldives Ports Limited (MPL) has signed an agreement with Housing Development Corporation (HDC) to lease land for the expansion of container storage at Hulhumale’ International Terminal.

With the increase in the number of goods imported to the Maldives during the month of Ramadan, the agreement will solve the problems faced by the company due to the lack of container space at its Main port, Male’ Commercial Harbour

Under the agreement, the company will acquire the necessary land for Hulhumale’ International Port. According to MPL, the land size acquired is over 120,000 square feet, whereby over 2,000 containers can be stored. This will help solve the space constraints currently faced by MPL. In addition to increasing capacity, operation capacity will also be improved. With the increase in the number of goods imported to the Maldives during the month of Ramadan, the agreement will solve the problems faced by the company due to the lack of container space at its main port, Male’ Commercial Harbour. MPL states that it aims to unload goods from the boat as soon as possible.




Corporate Maldives | April 22

STELCO Urges Energy Conservation During Maldives’ Hottest Days of the Year

MWSC Completes Water and Sewerage Projects in 4 Islands

State Electric Company (STELCO) has urged its customers to conserve electricity, as the country faces the hottest days of the year.

MWSC has recently completed water and sewerage projects in four islands.

Energy consumption is often especially high during the month of April, when temperatures typically reach the highest in the Maldives. Information released by the Maldives Meteorological Service shows that on average, April has been the hottest months of the year over the last 30 years, with the temperature reaching the warmest at 02:00 pm. This year, the month of April also coincides with Ramadan, which is another period when electricity consumption is high. In a statement, the state-owned utility company advised customers to pay greater attention to energy consumption levels, and to remain careful in using appliances such as air conditioners that typically consume more energy. STELCO has stated that with necessary measures, electricity bills can be lowered by 15 percent when energy consumption rises in the month of April. The company had launched its annual ‘Save Energy’ campaign in February earlier this year.

The company said that the water and sewerage projects were completed in B. Goidhoo, R. Kinolhas, N. Maalhendhoo and N. Kudafaree. The projects are currently being commissioned, in collaboration with the Planning Ministry, Fenaka and MWSC. As part of the efforts to establish water systems in the four islands, a RO facility building and a water storage facility have been installed. Water meters have also been installed in the houses of the islands and water connections have been made. As part of the sewerage system, an administrative building, a pumping station and a sea outfall have been constructed. Junctions and sewerage connections have also been connected to houses. MWSC has also provided generator sets, vehicles and water analysis equipment to maintain the water and sewerage system in the islands. The total cost of the water and sewerage projects in the four islands is MVR 163.55 million.

Corporate Maldives | April 22



Environment & Sustainability

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Sri Lanka’s Largest PET Recycler Eco Spindles is Looking to Expand into Maldives!

Eco Spindles Ltd., Sri Lanka’s largest recycler of PET plastic has expressed interest in expanding their recycling operation to other markets in the region, including the Maldives. Eco Spindles Ltd. is a fully owned subsidiary of BPPL Holdings PLC and is ranked amongst the Global Recycling Foundations top 10 Recycling Heroes of 2021. The company plays a substantial role in Sri Lanka and all over the world, influencing the collection of PET plastic bottle waste, recycling it and creating value added products such as polyester yarn for apparel manufacturers and monofilaments for brush makers around the world. Polyethylene Terephthalate or PET plastic is commonly used to make drink bottles, clothing, food containers etc. and is amongst the most recyclable plastics in the world. In Sri Lanka, they run three state-of-art plants that offer substantial and extensive inventory and rapid production roll-out, including one of only two plants in the world that create yarn directly from PET flakes. Eco Spindles Ltd. has already recycled approximately 380 million PET bottles. Around 60,000kg of PET bottles are recycled every month into high-quality polyester yarn that can be knitted or woven into fabric.

Dr Anush Amarasinghe, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of BPPL Holdings PLC shared his thoughts: "As a company that aspires to be a world leader in plastic recycling, we are constantly looking to create practical, long-term solutions to help maintain our environment. In the same vein, we are also looking to expand our operations into other countries in the region where a solution to the plastic bottle waste problem is required." There are many countries in the region, including the Maldives, where the creation of a circular economy would be beneficial both economically and environmentally, with recycling being forefront. Eco Spindles Ltd.’s recycling plants will not only add great economic value to any market it enters, but also be a great asset in helping solve the plastic waste problem. Much like Sri Lanka, the Maldives stands to benefit from the operations conducted by Eco Spindles Ltd., as plastic, if properly disposed of and recycled, is as a valuable resource for the nation’s economy as well as a vital tool to improve the livelihoods of the people. Eco Spindles Ltd. is keen to introduce its proven expertise from Sri Lanka, into the Maldives and other countries in the region, to help solve the plastic waste problem that plagues the whole world.

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Environment & Sustainability

Noo Raajje Ocean Use Survey Reaches Halfway Milestone with Unprecedented Response Rate Noo Raajje’s ambitious Ocean Use Survey has reached its halfway milestone, with nearly 1,900 responses, representing 7,500 ocean users from 16 atolls across the Maldives. Since the launch, the survey has been met with enthusiasm from Maldivians. The impressive participation from community members has made this survey the largest Ocean Use Survey to date. The survey examines how local waters are used by fisherfolk, local communities, individuals, the tourism sector, and others. Over the past three months, 18 Noo Raajje facilitators have been talking to communities across the nation to ensure widespread representation across all 16 ocean use sectors identified for the survey. With 71% of Maldivians relying on the ocean as their primary source of income, a successful Maldivian economy, led by fisheries and tourism, is dependent on healthy and vibrant ocean ecosystems. The Ocean Use Survey is part of Noo Raajje’s science based, community driven Marine Spatial Planning process that seeks to strengthen the government’s blue economy initiatives by promoting sustainable fisheries practices and tourism activities. The results of the survey will also be used to help identify conservation areas to reach the administration’s target of preserving at least 20% of the Maldivian ocean and its resources، to ensure sustainable development and advancement of blue economy strategy initatives in the Maldives. Noo Raajje is still seeking additional input on how the oceans are utilized by stakeholders around the country in order to ensure widespread representation. The team of facilitators will continue traveling throughout the Maldives in order to reach each inhabited island. Interested participants who want to influence the future of the nation’s ocean can also schedule time with a facilitator or complete the survey independently.

Reached its halfway milestone with nearly 1,900 responses, representing 7,500 ocean users from 16 atolls across the Maldives



Environment & Sustainability

Corporate Maldives | April 22

USD 10.5 Million USAID Climate Change Adaptation Project Launched in the Maldives

United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has launched its Climate Change Adaptation Project worth USD 10.5 million in the Maldives. This 5-year project will use market-based solutions to enhance adaptation efforts. Speaking at the ceremony Mission Director of USAID to Maldives Reed Aeschliman said that the Climate Change Adaptation project responds to U.S. and Maldivian calls to action to address the climate crisis. Minister of Environment, Climate Change and Technology, Aminath Shauna stated that despite contributing least to global warming, the Small Island States such as the Maldives are being impacted first and most severely by the climate crisis.

This project is in line with the government’s Strategic Action Plan to create resilient communities through strengthening adaptation actions and opportunities, and building climateresilient communities to address current, as well as future vulnerabilities. Under the project, USAID will aid in identifying and scaling up innovative solutions for climate-related challenges and engage the private sector to invest in the adaptation activities.

Corporate Maldives | April 22



Corporate Maldives Events

Corporate Maldives Business Expo 2022 Visitor Registrations Open Via “Network” Corporate Maldives has opened visitor registrations for Business Expo 2022, international business networking and trade show of the Maldives via Corporate Maldives "Network". Corporate Maldives Business Expo 2022 is scheduled to be held as a hybrid (both in-person & online) event from 7-8 June 2022. Businesses from all corporate sectors of the Maldives will be exhibiting at this expo. Both visitors and exhibitors can preschedule over 2000 meetings in the span of the two-day event. "Network", the business networking portal of the Maldives will also be used all year-round and visitors can benefit from strengthening business connections, gain fresh ideas, and career advancement as well. Corporate Maldives Network will have a portal of the Maldivian business community offering opportunities to network within the B2B community.

Key features of "Network" are: Virtual profiles Pre-schedule meetings Video calls & conference Product launch opportunities

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Corporate Maldives | April 22

Corporate Maldives Events


Corporate Maldives “GOLD 100 GALA” to Be Held on June 9 at CROSSROADS Maldives

Maldives’ most prestigious business awards, Corporate Maldives " GOLD 100 GALA" will be held at CROSSROADS Maldives on 9th June 2022. This is following the Corporate Maldives Business Expo, which will be held from 7-8 June 2022. "GOLD 100 GALA’ is an invitation-only networking event bringing together top executives of Maldivian business community together in one place for a glamorous awards night celebrating the success of the GOLD 100 companies. This event will be attended by Chairmen, Managing Directors, CEOs, and key decision makers within the business community of Maldives. At the GALA function, "GOLD 100" companies will be presented with an award & the "GOLD 100" magazine will be unveiled. "GOLD 100" is a list of leading 100 business entities in the Maldives,

published by Corporate Maldives every year. Through a transparent and unbiased selection criterion, "GOLD 100" is devised as a selection of the leading business entities, rather than a ranking. As such, the list would be published in alphabetical order. Corporate Maldives will also award the Lifetime Achievement Award to recognize visionary business leaders who have made significant contributions to their respective industry. Every year, Corporate Maldives will announce two award recipients whose businesses and philanthropic activities have enhanced the overall development of the Maldivian business community. The recipient of this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award will be announced during the Corporate Maldives "GOLD 100 GALA" at CROSSROADS Maldives.


Corporate Maldives | April 22

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Corporate Maldives | April 22

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Corporate Maldives | April 22

Business Directory





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Corporate Maldives | April 22


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Corporate Maldives | April 22

Business Directory




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Corporate Maldives | April 22



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Corporate Maldives | April 22

Ooredoo Maldives Data Center Looking After Your Business Ooredoo Maldives Data Center is one of the most sophisticated and advanced data centers in the Maldives.

Tier III Compliant

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Corporate Maldives | April 22


Instagram Directory of Maldives

Discover new — Style HILLTOP BY MUNA



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Discover new — Arts & Crafts MR. PENCIL MALDIVES


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DYEVEHI Specializing in Handcrafted Clothing


Discover new — Wellness THE SKIN BAR



Beauty, cosmetic & personal care

For the sunny people SPF 50 Sunscreen lotion and Aftersun Aloe Vera Gel out now!

Eco-conscious bath & body brand handcrafted in Maldives (ISO9001:2015 certified)International shippingDM to visit Ogaa Studio of


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Corporate Maldives | April 22

International Business Networking & Trade Show of Maldives