India has always respected Maldives' sovereignty and treated it as an equal, said Maldivian Speaker of Parliament Mohamed Nasheed on Friday.
"Many superpowers have risen, empires rise and fall and now we see India on the rise. As India rises and attains the status of superpower... We do not see how India's actions have ever been a threat to the Maldives or any of its neighbours. India has always respected our sovereignty and always treated us as equals, however small we are," said Nasheed while speaking at the Ideas Conclave 2020 in the .
The former President lauded the Indian government saying that it has never happened that a project initiated by New Delhi had become a debt trap.
"Maldives now has a democratic government and now with Indian assistance. It is all very different. Indian projects in the Maldives are transparent and everyone knows what is going on. Everybody knows the price of it. Indian projects tendered by Government of India are transparent. It is very rare, has almost never happened that any of these have become a debt trap. I like India rising," he said.
However, Nasheed voiced concerns over the rise of China in the Indian Ocean.
"We've another superpower coming to the Indian Ocean - China. Unfortunately, the manner in which this superpower is treating the Indian Ocean islands is very, very different," he added.