Male’, Maldives – Former President and current Speaker of the Parliament, Mohamed Nasheed tweeted earlier today, saying that while the recent Fitch downgrade needs to be considered, he remains optimistic about the the country’s economy if external debt can be restructured, especially as tourism is observed to be bouncing back
This tweets comes after Fitch Ratings Inc., downgraded Maldives’ long-term foreign-currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) from ‘B+’ to ‘B’ and eventually to ‘CCC’ recently.
Fitch Ratings have highlighted the low tourism numbers and excessive spending by the government on infrastructure as key factors in the rating decrease.
Replies to Nasheed’s tweets have criticized the government for “unnecessary” infrastructure projects financed through lines of credit from India. The projects such a state of the art stadium for cricket, an unpopular sport in the Maldives received public disapproval, especially due to the $800 Million in debt it brings to the country.
The Indian government has also pledged a $500 Million line of credit to build a new bridge connecting Male’ to 3 surrounding islands. With the National debt at MVR 172 Billion, public outrage on the matter could be justified as the government continues to spend excessive amounts on what the public describes as unnecessary expenses.