India, Maldives sign regional security MoU

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on regional security, safety and marine environment protection has been signed between the Government of Maldives and the Government of India.

The MoU was signed by Indian High Commissioner to the Maldives Sunjay Sudhir and Transport Minister Aishath Nahula.

Under the agreement, Maldives will gain access to India's MRIT services, National Disaster Center (NDC) and LRIT conformance test facility on a no cost basis. This will help the Maldives to fulfill its obligations as a member of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) without the need to establish its own disaster center. The Maldives will also receive India's assistance in human resource capacity building.

Additionally, IMO will establish an LRIT system in the Maldives. The system will enhance international vessel identification and vessel safety, and ensure the safety and protection of the maritime environment. The system will obtain and provide information on the location of IMO member vessels, under the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS). Information will also be shared by Indian National Disaster Center for LRIT.

The agreement also facilitates real-time vessel tracking for owners and managers of shipping companies through a website. The service will enable vessel owners to continously monitor their vessels, and take immediate action in circumstances such as hijacking, accidents and disasters.