90% of land sold from Thilafushi designated for locals

K. Thilafushi. (Photo/Google Maps)

90 percent of the land being sold from Thilafushi for industrial purposes is allotted for local businesses with controlled lease rates, states Housing Development Corporation (HDC).

In a statement Wednesday, HDC said that 150 hectors of land are being reclaimed in Thilafushi to solve the shortage in land and increased land lease rates in the island.

HDC opened tender for 50 plots of land in connection to the project earlier this week.

According to HDC, 90 percent of the land being reclaimed in Thilafushi is designated for local businesses with lease control measures.

Addressing concern over the sale of land to both foreign and local businesses – a move which several parties warn could destroy local small and medium enterprises, HDC said that Thilafushi is not a special economic zone and that while foreign businesses have been granted the opportunity to bid for a limited number of plots, the businesses too will need to abide by Maldivian laws and regulations.

HDC also provided assurance the foreign businesses will not affect the sectors designated solely for locals such as fisheries and agriculture, and that the project will create numerous job opportunities for locals.

HDC released its policies on issuance of land from the industrial area in Thilafushi last week. According to the policies, while local businesses have the chance to own the land, foreign businesses can only purchase the land for up to 99 years.

The minimum bidding rate is MVR 1,700 per square foot.