MLSA formulates regulation on naming geographical locations

Aeriel view of Koattey area in Addu Nature Park | Photo: Environmental Protection Agency

Malé, Maldives – Maldives Land and Survey Authority (MLSA) has formulated the regulation on naming geographical areas of Maldives.

As per the regulation, a special committee on naming any islands, lagoons, reeves, other oceanic areas, administrative regions and other significant geographic locations without an official name will also be formulated. The committee will also be responsible for revising the names of such places, should the occasion arise.

The committee comprises of nine government authorities:

  • Maldives Land and Survey Authority
  • President’s Office
  • Planning Ministry
  • Environment Ministry
  • Academy of Dhivehi Language
  • Ministry of Fisheries, Marine Resources and Agriculture Ministry
  • Tourism Ministry
  • Local Government Authority (LGA)
  • Ministry of Arts, Culture and Heritage

Standards to be adhered to when naming a location include being a word within the Dhivehi vocabulary and being a socially acceptable, classy, and easy to pronounce word. Other guidelines include, not being a name that has already been allocated to another location, and being a name that resembles geographical, geological, historical aspects of the region as well as and other significant species found at the location.

Guidelines on naming geographical locations:

  • Size of the island
  • Characteristics of the island
  • Location, region of the island
  • Geographical age of the island
  • Geological features of the island
  • Historical features of the island

The guidelines also state that should a third party, other than the MLSA or another government authority, apply to name a location, it should be within the requirements of this regulation, and only if the party had reclaimed the island, after the lagoon being leased to the party by a government authority.