Saudi Arabia's Minister of Hajj and Umrah Dr Tawfig bin Fawzan Al-Rabiah on Wednesday said his country is interested in increasing relations with Bangladesh in various sectors including trade and investment.
The minister said this during a courtesy call on President Mohammed Shahabuddin at Bangabhaban.
Welcoming the minister, the president said that Saudi Arabia is a close friend of Bangladesh. The relationship between the two countries is now excellent.
He also said that Saudi Arabia is playing an important role in the socio-economic development of Bangladesh.
Shahabuddin said Saudi Arabia is one of Bangladesh's manpower export destinations. Bangladeshi skilled and unskilled manpower working in Saudi Arabia is contributing positively to the infrastructure and economic development of the two countries.
He expressed the hope that the Saudi government will take more effective initiatives for the welfare of Bangladeshis living in Saudi Arabia.
Referring to the completion of immigration in Dhaka for Bangladeshi Hajj pilgrims to perform the holy Hajj, the president said that the journey and performance of the Hajj has become easy and comfortable for the pilgrims for this initiative.
He expressed the hope that all Hajj pilgrims of the world including Bangladesh will be able to perform Hajj more easily and smoothly in the future.
Praising the Saudi government for its warm hospitality during Hajj as a royal guest this year, the President said that various Islamic traditions, including the holy Haram Sharif and Masjid-e-Nababi, are highly respected and prestigious for the devout Muslims of Bangladesh.
Referring to the Saudi government's humanitarian assistance for the displaced Rohingyas from Myanmar in Bangladesh, President Shahabuddin expressed hope that Saudi Arabia will play a strong role in various international forums for the safe and honourable repatriation of the Rohingyas.
Referring to his meeting with Saudi Prime Minister and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman during the Hajj, the president expressed hope that he would visit Bangladesh soon.
The Saudi minister said that the existing relations between the two brotherly countries Saudi Arabia and Bangladesh are very good.
The Saudi minister appreciated the various development programmes of Bangladesh and congratulated the government and people of Bangladesh on becoming a developing country from a less developed country.
He said the Saudi government's cooperation will continue for the development of Bangladesh.
The minister also assured that necessary initiatives will be taken so that Bangladeshi pilgrims can perform Hajj more easily and smoothly.
State Minister for Religion Md. Faridul Haque Khan, secretaries of the President and Saudi Ambassador to Bangladesh Essa Yussef Essa Al Duhailan were present during the meeting.