Bangladesh for boosting trade relations with African nations
BSS . Johannesburg 25 Aug 2023 11:26:35 | Update: 25 Aug 2023 21:41:55
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina — File Photo
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said Bangladesh has attached priority to enhancing further the bilateral and trade relations with African nations as she held bilateral meetings with heads of the state of four countries including three from Africa on the sidelines of the 15th BRICS Summit in Johannesburg.
"We want to boost the bilateral and trade relations with the African nations for mutual benefits," she said.
Foreign Minister Abdul Momen briefed newsmen about the prime minister's daylong engagement on Thursday after the meetings at his room of the Hotel Radisson Blu Sandton. Prime Minister's speech-writer Md Nazrul Islam was present during the briefing.
Sheikh Hasina also sought investments in various sectors from the countries for mutual benefit.
The bilateral meetings between Sheikh Hasina and Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, President of Mozambique Filipe Jacinto Nyusi, President of Tanzania Saima Sulluhu and Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi were held at Sandton Convention Centre on Thursday.
A meeting was also held between Bangladesh prime minister and President of the New Development Bank Dilma Vana Rousseff at the same venue.
During the meetings, the five dignitaries highly praised Bangladesh's remarkable development under Sheikh Hasina's prudent leadership, Momen said.
The Brazilian president assured Bangladesh to give all sorts of cooperation and invited the Bangladesh prime minister to visit Brazil at a convenient time, the foreign minister said.
He said after bilateral talks with Sheikh Hasina, the Iranian president expressed his desire to visit Bangladesh again to see in person the country’s massive development citing that he had earlier visited Jashore 30 years back.
"I want to visit Bangladesh to see the massive development you have done," Ebrahim Raisi said.
During the bilateral meeting with the president of Mozambique, Sheikh Hasina sought investments from Mozambique on a larger scale, particularly in pharmaceuticals.
New Development Bank President Dilma Rousseff has expressed her organisation's eagerness to provide assistance to Bangladesh, particularly in the projects regarding women empowerment, saying that the bank has already sanctioned $700 million in two development schemes in Bangladesh.
"I can assure you Bangladesh will get top priority from the New Development Bank as long as I am the president of the bank," Rousseff said.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina arrived in Johannesburg to attend the 15th BRICS Summit on August 22 at the invitation of the Current Chair of BRICS and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa.
On the sidelines of the BRICS Plus Dialogue, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and President of the Republic of Indonesia Joko Widodo earlier exchanged pleasantries with the Bangladesh prime minister.
United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres, vice-president of Uganda, deputy prime minister of South Africa, and Russia and Saudi Arabia’s foreign ministers also exchanged pleasantries with Sheikh Hasina.
The prime minister also joined a photo session with the heads of state and government who arrived in Johannesburg to attend the BRICS Summit.
After wrapping up her four-day visit in South Africa, she will depart Johannesburg for home on August 26 and is expected to arrive in Dhaka on August 27 morning.