The Maldives has re-established its embassy in the United States, marking a return to a full-time diplomatic presence after 14 years.

The Foreign Ministry said in statement that the opening of the embassy “signals a bold new era of reinvigorated and strengthened diplomatic ties between the Maldives and the United States, and will no doubt bring forth greater cooperation and collaboration between the two countries in the global arena.” It further said the embassy will “serve as a vital bridge between the two countries in cultivating economic growth, cultural and people-to-people ties that will mutually benefit both nations.”

In a tweet, Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid described the reopening of the Maldives embassy as “a historic moment strengthening our bilateral relations and fostering closer ties between Maldives and the United States.”

Marking the reopening of the embassy in Washington, D.C., Minister Shahid Shahid hosted a reception on Friday. The ceremony was attended by Chief Justice Ahmed Muthasim Adnan, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State, Donald Lu and other senior officials from the White House, State Department, Treasury, USAID, Office of the United States Trade Representative, United States Chamber of Commerce, think tanks and media, and audience from wider diplomatic community. The ceremony was also attended by the resident Maldivian community in Washington, D.C.