President says USD crunch will be fixed once more mega projects run

President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu delivers address at the World Governments Summit 2024 on February 13, 2024. (Photo/President's Office)

President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu says that the US dollar crunch facing the Maldives will be resolved once the country reforms it economy and launches more mega projects.

On the Q&A platform ‘Raeesge Javaab’, Ahmed Sameer, a resident of K. Maafushi, shared the difficulties people are facing in getting US dollars.

“The people are having a hard time getting US dollars. Though Aasandha covers the tickets, we still need to beg. The USD 500 isn’t enough. So, when will you arrange a better way?” he asked.

President Muizzu responded that his administration is working to resolve the US dollar shortage.

“In Sha Allah, we will have more US dollars once major projects are run and more investments come in,” he said.

Sameer also asked the president when an USD ATM will be installed in Maafushi.

President Muizzu said a USD ATM will be installed in Maafushi, a local tourism hotspot, within this year.

He added that he will not hold off on projects until the last year of his presidency, and will also launch the land reclamation project in the island soon.

“I may be unlikely the project will begin year, but we will launch it as soon as possible. We will not wait until the last year in office, as you just mentioned. That is not how we will operate. We will work to conduct projects for the benefit and wellbeing of the people as soon as possible,” he said.

The shortage in USD has pushed the exchange rate in the black market to above MVR 18. This has worsened inflation in the Maldives, which is almost entirely dependent on imports.