DHAKA, Jan 28 2021 (BSS) – Foreign Minister Dr. AK Abdul Momen today said Dhaka wants Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s dream of regional cooperation to be fulfilled through the BIMSTEC process.
He said this while welcoming the new Secretary General of BIMSTEC Tenzin Lekphell at the Foreign Ministry here today, a press release said here.
The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) is a grouping of seven nations of South and South East Asia – Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Thailand. These are among the countries dependent on the Bay of Bengal.
The foreign minister stated that Bangabandhu back in 1972 expressed his dream of economic and social prosperity of the South Asian peoples through working with the neighbours in the region.
Since then, he said, regional cooperation has been an integral component of the constitution and foreign policy priorities of Bangladesh.
Momen said Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, the able daughter of the founding father, attaches high importance to the BIMSTEC forum as a tool of regional movement which is manifested in hosting its secretariat in Dhaka.
By the instruction of Prime Minister, he said, the foreign ministry took an initiative to construct a new multi-storied iconic building for the BIMSTEC Secretariat, he added.
The foreign minister laid emphasis on implementation of the BIMSTEC Master Plan for Transport Connectivity for the greater benefit of the region.
He said the implementation process of BIMSTEC cooperation in various sectors must be expedited on priority basis to harness quick dividends for the peoples in the Bay of Bengal region through exploitation of the full regional potentials.
“In its 24 years of existence (it) must produce visible results now,” he observed.
He said that BIMSTEC platform could be used in addressing multi-prong challenges in the Post-Covid-19 Era in a more effective and powerful manner.
The foreign minister reiterated Bangladesh’s strong commitment to strengthen BIMSTEC cooperation in the fields of trade, investment and development,
“The relevant ministries and agencies of Bangladesh are ready to host all required meetings and events in this regard to foster the areas of cooperation,” he said.
The foreign minister also observed that connectivity could play a vital role in accelerating the pace of economic development of BIMSTEC region.
Momen expressed his pleasure on Tenzin Lekphell’s appointment as the third Secretary General of BIMSTEC nominated by Bhutan, the first country to recognize Bangladesh as an independent country.