Directed Bangladeshi diplomats to be more active in strengthening economic diplomacy – PM

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Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has directed Bangladeshi diplomats to be more active in strengthening economic diplomacy aiming to maintain the country’s graduation as a developing nation through increasing trade and export.

“You (diplomats) will have to be active in strengthening economic diplomacy alongside brightening the image of the country,” she told a regional envoy conference at her place of residence here on Monday evening.

Bangladeshi diplomats stationed in the Middle East countries joined it. Since Bangladesh is going to graduate as a developing country, she said attention needs to be paid to those countries, where, Bangladesh could enhance its trade and business and be benefited as a developing country.

“You will have to discuss and negotiate with all the countries keeping eyes open. So we can survive as a developing country, move forward further and can finally graduate as a developed country,” she said.

Mentioning that once diplomacy was a political matter, Sheikh Hasina said now it is an economic matter means economic diplomacy as well.

“So, you, who are working (in different countries) will have to identify the countries where we can do trade and business as well as we’ve scope to export our products, and the countries, from where, we can import goods at lower prices and fair prices,” she said.

She also said the most important thing is that it is very essential to enhance business and trade further.

“Identify the places where our products have demand and where we have scope for the marketing of our goods,” she added.
Referring to the policy of Bangladesh to maintain good relations with different countries, the premier said the cornerstone of the country’s foreign policy is “friendship to all, malice towards none.”

“At least I can claim that Bangladesh is following this policy properly,” she said.

She said Bangladesh would maintain friendly relations with everyone but when any unjust thing is seen, Bangladesh will definitely speak out maintaining the friendly relations as it did with Myanmar.

“When the incident happened in Myanmar, we gave shelter to the Rohingyas on humanitarian ground, but we did not engage in conflict with Myanmar. Bangladesh is making diplomatic efforts to send the Rohingyas back to their homeland,” she added.

Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen, Education Minister Dr Dipu Moni and Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi, among others, were present in the conference.

The prime minister is now visiting Qatar to attend the fifth United Nations Conference on Least Developed Countries (LDC-5).

She arrived here on Saturday last at the invitation of Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani and United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.The prime minister is scheduled to leave here for Dhaka on Wednesday.

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