Addu City, Maldives – At a meeting with the Addu Development Committee (ADC), Tourism Minister Abdulla Mausoom today has said that two resorts in Addu that have been closed for months due the pandemic, will see their operations hopefully restarted this year.
Mausoom disclosed that there were ongoing discussions with the management of Canareef Resort Maldives, and that there will be very good news soon. He also stated that discussions with management of Shangri-la Villingili Resort and Spa were ongoing, adding that both resorts are expected to reopen in 2021.
Both of these resorts were closed indefinitely in 2020 following the Covid-19 pandemic. All employees were laid off with the closures having terrible effects on the local economy.
In an interview to a local news outlet, ADC’s Vice President Ahmed Shareef said that one of the issued raised during the meeting was that while the government has a 30 percent stake in Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort & Spa, Maldives, they are unable to restart the establishment while Addu people who lost their jobs continue to suffer.
Shareef stated that while government has a 30 percent stake in Shangri-la’s resort, it is unclear to the current administration how to influence decision making within the resort. Shareef also said that if the board member appointed by the government is not able to fulfill their duties in a beneficial manner to the government then that person needs to be replaced.
“If there’s some issue within the board, instead of seat warmers, we must select responsible individuals who put in effort” said Shareef.
Currently ongoing tourism development projects were also discussed at the meeting. The government has planned 8,000 additional tourism beds in Addu City, and have decided 96 properties to be developed in the tourism zones.
While development efforts have begun on some of these, ADC stated today that no solid plans have been established for this, adding that meetings with stakeholders on ongoing and planned projects are important.