Minister of Economic Development and Trade Mohamed Saeed participated in a business roundtable organised by the US Chamber of Commerce in Washington D.C. on Tuesday. The meeting, attended by corporate sector representatives, is part of Minister Saeed’s ongoing visit to the United States, where he is scheduled to engage in trade talks with businesses and government agencies.

“Purpose of the trip is to discuss ways to deepen trade & investments ties,” a social media post by the Trade Ministry read.

The visit, touted as a ‘trade delegation’ visit to the US, was first announced by the Minister Saeed, during campaigning for the parliamentary elections, on 27 February.

“On July 10, for the first time, if I am not mistaken, a trade delegation will visit the US capital Washington. That has been facilitated by the US government for the President [Mohamed Muizzu],” he said.

As the administration is in the midst of implementing its fiscal reform package, with a view mainly to cut costs in order to address the nation’s financial hurdles, it has yet to be revealed whether any other senior administration officials are part of the trade delegation.

With Foreign Minister Moosa Zameer visiting the US last month, the Maldives is seen to be prioritising re-engagement of bilateral relations with the US.

Meanwhile, the US Senate is considering imposing sanctions on the Maldives over its decision, in the wake of the ongoing genocide in Gaza and as Israeli officials are being sought for war crimes, to ban Israeli passport holders from entering the country in solidarity with Palestine — an effort that, as of now, has made little progress.

US support of Israel’s actions in Gaza has drawn, and continues to draw, harsh and repeated public criticism from the larger Maldivian public.

Additional reporting by Ibrahim Inaan