Dhaka, Jul 23: Bangladesh and Malta agreed to begin a new era of cooperation to invigorate bilateral relations to achieve concrete benefits for the peoples of the two countries.
This was agreed between Bangladesh Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen and Maltese Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Promotion Carmelo Abela during the first ever official bilateral talks held in Maltese capital Valletta on Monday.
The two Foreign Ministers exchanged views on all issues of mutual interests, with particular emphasis on enhanced economic cooperation by building partnerships in areas like maritime sector and Blue Economy. Taking into account the fastest growing economic growth in both countries (ie, Malta is currently enjoying more than 5 per cent growth, highest in Europe and Bangladesh is poised to grow over 8 per cent for the current FY), both sides agreed to exchange trade and investment delegation in the near future to explore opportunities and also to exchange experience and ideas for new businesses in areas like high level manufacturing/marketing (e,g facilitation of EU market access for generic pharma products), FinTech, blockchain technologies.
Cooperation in the UN, Commonwealth and other International Organisations on issues like climate change, migration, including supporting each other's candidatures for elections in the international bodies, was also discussed.
Maltese Foreign Minister praised the leadership role played by Bangladesh government in managing the protracted Rohingya crisis and assured to extend continued support for peaceful resolution of the crisis. The two Foreign Ministers signed two MOUs after the bilateral talks, respectively, on (a) regular holding of Political Consultations, and (b) cooperation between Diplomatic Training Academies of the two countries. Bangladesh Foreign Minister, who is on a two day official bilateral visit to Malta, also met with the President of Malta Dr George Vella and Prime Minister of Malta Joseph Muscat.
President of Malta saluted Bangladesh for the generosity extended to the Rohingyas. He further attributed the stable leadership at the top as the key for Bangladesh's stellar economic growth/success. Maltese Prime Minister Muscat expressed confidence about " undoubted scope for cooperation" in the maritime industry/blue economy as well as market access facilitation role for Malta in supporting Bangladeshi companies to get registered their generic pharma products for EU.
In the afternoon, both Foreign Ministers attended, Bangladesh Malta Business Forums hosted by the Malta Chamber of Commerce, Enterprise and Industry, in collaboration with Bangladesh Embassy in Greece, with concurrent accreditation to Malta.
Later in the evening, Foreign Minister Dr Momen attended a reception hosted by the Bangladesh Community in Malta, where Maltese Foreign Minister Abela joined along with his spouse.
Bangladesh Ambassador to Greece, with concurrent accreditation to Malta, Md Jashim Uddin and Director General (West Europe and EU) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Mohammad Khorshed A Khastagir, among others, were present in the meetings.
Foreign Minister Dr Momen also met with the Speaker of the Maltese Parliament today. (UNI)