A Japanese delegation, led by Nakanishi Yusuke, director of the committee on general affairs, House of Councillors, pays a courtesy call on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at Ganabhaban in Dhaka on September 5, 2023 — PID Photo
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday said Bangladesh will allocate more space to Japan in export processing zones (EPZs) for setting up industries if they want.
The premier said this as a Japanese delegation informed her that many companies of their country are interested to invest in Bangladesh.
Sheikh Hasina said, "Bangladesh has given space to Japan in the EPZs, and we can give more [space] if Japan wants to set up industries."
The five-member Japanese parliamentary delegation, led by director of the committee on general affairs, House of Councillors, Nakanishi Yusuke paid the courtesy call on the prime minister at her official residence Ganabhaban in Dhaka.
The premier's press secretary Ihsanul Karim briefed the reporters after the call on.
The delegation said the existing development partnership between Japan and Bangladesh has to be carried forward and strengthened further.
Japan has been working on different mega projects, including the metro rail, the delegation members said, adding that Japan is contributing to infrastructure development, especially mega projects of Bangladesh.
Lauding the commencement of direct flight between Dhaka and Narita, they said it would improve connectivity.
The Japanese delegation also stressed the necessity of keeping the Indian Ocean peaceful for trade and business. They highly appreciated Bangladesh's success in women’s empowerment and education.
In reply, the prime minister said, "Our girls study in a much larger number in educational institutions than boys, and we are providing free of cost education to the girls."
Sheikh Hasina sought Japanese assistance to build a sea aquarium in the country.
Earlier, Nippon Foundation Chairman Yohei Sasakawa paid a courtesy call on the prime minister at Ganabhaban. During the meeting, Sasakawa told her that the Nippon Foundation will provide $3 million for Rohingya support in Bhasan Char.
Regarding the Rohingya people, the prime minister said they have to go back to their own country, Myanmar.
She added, "Myanmar is our neighbouring country, we are communicating with them. Their citizens [Rohingyas] must be taken back to their own country."
Sasakawa, an 84-year-old person who survived along with his mother in the Second World War when over one lakh people died, also highlighted the friendship between Bangladesh and Japan.
He praised Bangladesh's effort to eliminate leprosy and rehabilitate the people suffering from Leprosy.
The Nippon Foundation chairman invited the prime minister to join the National Leprosy Conference to be held in Dhaka in October this year.
Prime Minister's Principal Secretary M Tofazzel Hossain Miah, Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen, and Japanese Ambassador to Bangladesh Iwama Kiminori were present.