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International Relations

Though one of the world’s smallest nations, the Republic of the Maldives maintains a strong international presence, raising our voice in support of ideals inherent to the Maldivian nation. Among our key issues is ensuring Climate Change Adaptation, harmonizing Sustainable Development, promoting Human Rights, encouraging Democratic Development, ensuring Peace and Security, and exploring Commercial and Economic Development

While much of the history of our international engagement has been passive, we believe that it is our responsibility, being a full member of the community of nations, to reach out to the global populous and engage them on issues of dire concern.

With resident diplomatic missions in Colombo, New Delhi, Islamabad, Dhaka, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, New York, Tokyo, Beijing, Riyadh, Abu Dhabi, London, Geneva, and the European Union as well as non-resident accreditation to a number of countries including Nepal, Bhutan, Spain, France, Palestine, Italy, Australia, and others; the Foreign Service of the Maldives has become truly international in its outlook. Driven by the fundamental goal of fostering warm and close relations with the international community, in pursuit of friendship, understanding and co-operation, it serves to communicate the interests and aspirations of the people of the Maldives.

History of Maldivian Foreign Policy

The Maldives has remained an autonomous nation throughout its recorded history, save for a brief spell of Portuguese occupation in the mid-16th century.  From 1887 to 1965, the country was a British Protectorate which retained full internal sovereignty. At independence in 1965, the Maldives made its first true step into the community of nations by joining the United Nations.

Since 1978, the Maldives has followed a policy of international engagement, intensifying links with donor institutions and countries, even joining the Commonwealth in 1982.

A founder member of SAARC (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation), the Maldives is also a member of the World Trade Organization and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency. It is also party to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty as well as numerous conventions on the protection of environment, the suppression of terrorism and on the promotion of human rights.

In the transition towards a liberal democracy, the Maldives has successfully established dialogue and collaboration with the international human rights organizations, such as Amnesty International and the International Committee of the Red Cross, and acceded to numerous human rights instruments such as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR).

During the same period, the country has also intensified links with the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association and joined the Inter-Parliamentary Union.

With resident diplomatic missions in Colombo, New Delhi, Islamabad, Dhaka, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, New York, Tokyo, Beijing, Riyadh, Abu Dhabi, London, Geneva, and the European Union as well as non-resident accreditation to a number of countries including Nepal, Bhutan, Spain, France, Palestine, Italy, Australia, and others; the Foreign Service of the Maldives has become truly international in its outlook. Driven by the fundamental goal of fostering warm and close relations with the international community, in pursuit of friendship, understanding and co-operation, it serves to communicate the interests and aspirations of the people of the Maldives.

Key issues of interest include advancing national development, supporting international peace and security, including the protection of the environment and the promotion of human rights, and upholding the purposes and principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations.

 

International Organisation Participation:

  • Asian Development Bank (ADB)
  • Commonwealth
  • Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA)
  • European Investment Bank (EIB)
  • Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO)
  • G-77 (coalition of developing countries)
  • International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD; World Bank Group)
  • International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO)
  • International Development Association (IDA; World Bank Group)
  • International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)
  • International Finance Corporation (IFC; World Bank Group)
  • International Monetary Fund (IMF)
  • International Maritime Organisation (IMO)
  • Interpol
  • International Olympic Committee (IOC)
  • International Telecoms Union (ITU)
  • Non-Aligned Movement (NAM)
  • Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC)
  • Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW)
  • South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC)
  • South Asia Cooperative Environment Programme (SACEP)
  • United Nations (UN)
  • United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD)
  • United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO)
  • United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO)
  • Universal Postal Union (UPU)
  • World Customs Organisation (WCO)
  • World Health Organisation (WHO)
  • World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO)
  • World Meteorological Organisation (WMO)
  • World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO)
  • World Trade Organisation (WTO)

Ratification of key International Conventions:

The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disability (CRPD)
Ratified 1 April 2010
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) 
Accession 19 September 2006
Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (OPICCPR) 
19 September 2006
International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) 
19 September 2006
International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination 
Accession 24 April 1984
Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women 
Accession 1 July 1993
Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women  
Ratified 13 March 2006
Convention Against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment 
Accession 20 April 2004
Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment 
Accession 22 June 2006 (founding member)
Convention on the Rights of the Child 
Ratified 11 February 1991
Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in armed conflict 
Ratified 29 December 2004
Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography 
Ratified 10 May 2002
Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide 
Accession 24 April 1984
Treaty on Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons 
Ratified 7 April 1970
Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) 
Accession 7 September 2000
Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and their Destruction (Biological Weapons Convention) 
Ratified 1 July 1993
Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling and use of Chemical Weapons and their Destruction (Chemical Weapons Convention) 
Ratified 31 May 1994
Conventions on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on their Destruction 
Ratified 7 September 2000
International Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid 
Accession 24 April 1984
Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer 
Accession 26 April 1988
Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer 
Ratified 16 May 1989
Basel Convention on the Control of Trans-boundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal 
Accession 28 April 1992
Convention on Biological Diversity 
Ratified 9 November 1992
Cartegna Protocol on Biosafety 
Accession 3 September 2002
Kyoto Protocol to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change 
Ratified 30 December 1998
UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs (1961) 
Accession 7 September 2000
UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances (1971) 
Accession 7 September 2000
UN Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (1988) 
Ratified 7 September 2000

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The primary role of the Ministry is to foster warm and close relations with the international community and to communicate the interests and aspirations of the people of the Maldives.

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