The Head of the EU Delegation to Bangladesh Ambassador Charles Whiteley congratulated Hon’ble Foreign Minister Dr. Hasan Mahmud, on his appointment as the Foreign Minister of the Government of Bangladesh, during an introductory courtesy call at the latter’s Office.
The Foreign Minister referred to Bangladesh’s longstanding value-driven partnership with the EU and recalled the recent visit of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to Brussels in October 2023 to further elevate the partnership to a new height. He expressed the hope that the negotiations on the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement between the two sides would commence soon to open a new chapter in Bangladesh-EU relations.
Commending the EU as Bangladesh’s largest export market, the Foreign Minister requested for EU’s Everything But Arms (EBA) trade concessions until 2032 to support Bangladesh’s smooth graduation from the LDC status as well as EU’s import of diversified products from Bangladesh including jute and jute goods along with traditional products like apparels and shrimps. The two sides also discussed ongoing Bangladesh-EU cooperation on migration management and talent partnership. Thanking the EU for its humanitarian assistance to the forcibly displaced Rohingyas, temporarily sheltered in Bangladesh, the Hon’ble Foreign Minister underlined the necessity to keep the Rohingya crisis under global attention and sought the EU’s strong support in resolving the crisis through their repatriation to Myanmar with safety, security and dignity.
The Ambassador highlighted the EU’s interest in supporting Bangladesh’s green transition, particularly the renewable energy sector under the Global Gateway, and appreciated the Hon’ble Foreign Minister’s offer of a dedicated zone for establishing factories by the EU businesses at the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Shilpa Nagar. The Foreign Minister suggested that European businesses and financing institutions can strongly participate in Bangladesh’s renewable energy sector through private-sector collaboration as the government has given special emphasis on the generation of electricity from renewable sources.
Both sides expressed concerns over the conflicts around the world and shared their views on the Russia-Ukraine war and the war in Gaza. The Foreign Minister expressed deep concerns over the indiscriminate killing of innocent civilians, mainly women and children, in Gaza.