The Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) of Bangladesh and the Agência para o Investimento e Comércio Externo de Portugal (AICEP) or the Trade and Investment Agency of Portugal have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on trade and investment cooperation online.
The MoU, signed on Thursday, will focus on strengthening economic relations between the two countries by promoting trade and industry as well as by bringing together business leaders from all sectors of the economy.
At the ceremony held simultaneously at two institutions, EPB Vice-Chairman AHM Ahsan in Dhaka and AICEP Chairman and CEO Luís Castro Henriques in Lisbon signed the MoU.
Through this MoU, the AICEP and the EPB aim to collaborate on developing direct business relations between their respective business communities of the two nations.
It will also promote the exchange of economic, trade and business information and entrepreneurial experience between the two organisations and help them undertake actions to support each other in the development of fairs and symposiums, conferences and other events aimed at expanding the bilateral trade and economic cooperation, said the Bangladesh Embassy in Lisbon on Friday.
It is expected that both organisations will facilitate sending business missions between the two countries to examine the prospects for cooperation in industry and trade.
Henriques hoped that both organisations of the two friendly countries would work closely for furthering business cooperation.
"This is only the beginning. My institution is ready to explore areas of cooperation under this framework. There is a huge untapped business potential between the two countries on which the two countries can work," he added.
Ahsan said this is the first MoU on business cooperation in the history of Bangladesh-Portugal bilateral relations.
He hoped that now business communities from both countries would get the opportunity to work closely which will "certainly in turn boost the bilateral trade and investment of the two nations."
Bangladesh Ambassador to Portugal Tarik Ahsan congratulated both the Export Promotion Bureau of Bangladesh and the Agência para o Investimento e Comércio Externo de Portugal on this momentous decision to tie up for a partnership.
Referring to the historic linkage between the countries, the ambassador said the people of Bangladesh and Portugal have been connected since the early 16th century.
On the Lisbon side of the ceremony, Manuel António Gaeiras, director of external relations and foreign markets, Maria José Alvarenga, deputy director of external relations and foreign markets, Daniel Pontes, market manager of external relations and foreign markets, of AICEP and First Secretary of Bangladesh Embassy Alamgeer Hossain were also present.
On the Dhaka side, EPB Director General Mahbubur Rahman, Director General of the West Europe and EU wing of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bangladesh Kazi Russel Pervez, and others attended the signing ceremony.