Bangladesh, Singapore keen to intensify bilateral cooperation

Bangladesh has sought support from Singapore to keep up pressure on Myanmar in an effort to resolve the Rohingya crisis through their sustainable repatriation.

Bangladesh is now hosting over 1.1 million Rohingyas in Cox’s Bazar district and Bhasan Char island and it says repatriation of the Rohingyas to their place of origin in Rakhine State is the only solution.

Bangladesh and Singapore also laid emphasis on signing the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) as soon as possible by concluding the ongoing negotiations in an effort to expand trade and investment.

The issues came up for discussion during a meeting between Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen and Singapore Minister for Foreign Affairs Vivian Balakrishnan held in Singapore on Monday.

During the meeting, Singapore’s support was sought to accelerate Bangladesh’s inclusion to the ASEAN Forum as a Sectoral Dialogue Partner.

In this regard, the foreign minister of Singapore expressed his government’s unwavering support in both the issues, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs here.

Foreign Minister Momen is now in Singapore as part of his three-day official visit at the invitation of the Singapore government.

He expressed his gratitude to the government and people of Singapore over the recent decision to launch a special award in the name of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman by the National University of Singapore.

They discussed a wide range of bilateral issues, including providing technical assistance, increasing Bangladesh’s exports of agricultural products to Singapore, continuing to co-operate in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals by tackling the effects of climate change, creating new jobs for Bangladeshi workers in Singapore, and ensuring minimum wages.

The two foreign ministers reiterated their commitment to further intensify and accelerate bilateral cooperation on the golden jubilee of Bangladesh-Singapore diplomatic relations.

During the hour-long meeting, they discussed important bilateral, regional and global issues.

.The meeting was also attended by Bangladesh High Commissioner to Singapore Md Tauhedul Islam and Director General of the Ministry of External Affairs (Southeast Asia) Md. Najmul Huda.

This was the first ministerial meeting between the two friendly countries since the outbreak of the Covid pandemic.

Foreign Minister Momen invited his Singaporean counterpart to visit Bangladesh at a convenient time this year.

Source: United News of Bangladesh