Asian Development Bank (ADB) Commits $490 Million to Enhance Urban Governance and Rural Roads in Bangladesh
In a significant move aimed at bolstering Bangladesh’s infrastructure and fostering sustainable development, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) has pledged a substantial sum of $490 million in loans. The agreements, inked between Sharifa Khan, Secretary of the Economic Relations Division (ERD), and Edimon Ginting, ADB Country Director for Bangladesh, mark a crucial step towards realizing these developmental aspirations. The accord encompasses two vital projects: a $190 million allocation for the ‘Rural Connectivity Improvement’ initiative and a substantial $300 million for the ‘Urban Governance and Infrastructure Programme’.
Underlining the nation’s focus on rural development, the ‘Rural Connectivity Improvement’ project, now in its second phase with additional financing, is being executed by the proficient Local Government Engineering Department. With a resolute objective, the project aims to revamp rural infrastructure, facilitating access to productive agricultural zones. This endeavor seeks to elevate rural roadways to meet all-weather standards, integrating climate resilience measures, while concurrently enhancing stakeholder capacity through effective training mechanisms.
Shifting gears to urban landscapes, the ‘Urban Governance and Infrastructure Programme’ is set to be implemented by the adept Local Government and Engineering Department. With a slated timeline from July 2023 to June 2028, this venture is geared towards achieving meticulously planned, inclusive, and sustainable urbanization. A cornerstone of this initiative involves the enhancement of city governance, a pivotal step towards uplifting overall infrastructure. This concerted effort not only envisages elevated living standards but also envisions a harmonious synthesis between urban growth and efficient governance.
As Bangladesh marches forward on its journey of progress, these agreements with the Asian Development Bank stand as a testament to the nation’s unwavering commitment to fortifying its rural roots, while also propelling its urban centers toward a future marked by robust infrastructure, judicious governance, and sustainable growth.
Bangladesh Aims to Enhance Bilateral Ties with South Korea in Trade and Investment
Bangladesh is eager to strengthen its bilateral relations with South Korea, particularly in the realms of trade and investment, in pursuit of realizing the dream of achieving a ‘Golden Bengal,’ as envisioned by the Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Md Shahriar Alam, expressed this commitment as the chief guest at a reception commemorating South Korea’s National Foundation Day. The reception, hosted by South Korean Ambassador to Bangladesh Park Young-Sik, took place at a city hotel on Sunday evening.
During his speech, Minister Alam conveyed Dhaka’s contentment with the consistent growth in bilateral trade and investment between Bangladesh and South Korea. He highlighted the 50-year history of robust bilateral relations and expressed optimism about elevating this friendship to a deeper and more comprehensive level of collaboration.
Furthermore, Minister Alam referenced the recent meeting between Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and President Yoon Suk Yeol on the sidelines of the G20 Leaders Summit in India, underlining the significance of such high-level engagements.
He reiterated Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s vision of establishing a knowledge and technology-based prosperous and intelligent Bangladesh by the year 2041.
Minister Alam also expressed gratitude for South Korea’s prompt recognition of Bangladesh as an independent state shortly after its independence on May 12, 1972.
Vietnam’s National Assembly President Attends Forum in Dhaka for Economic Collaboration with Bangladesh
Vuong Dinh Hue, the President of the Vietnam National Assembly, recently participated in an event held in Dhaka known as the ‘Forum on Policies and Laws to Foster Economic, Trade, and Investment Collaboration between Vietnam and Bangladesh.’ This significant gathering was jointly organized by the Vietnamese Ministry of Industry and Trade, the Ministry of Planning and Investment, the Vietnamese Embassy in Bangladesh, and in cooperation with key entities including the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) and the Vietnamese Business Association in Bangladesh.
The forum drew the presence of a distinguished high-level delegation from the Vietnamese National Assembly, alongside prominent figures from the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI), the Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI), and a substantial representation from businesses on both sides. Additionally, various ministries from both Vietnam and Bangladesh were represented.
During the forum, three notable business-to-business Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) were inked. These agreements included collaboration between BMH Vietnam Company and Doreen Group Bangladesh, focusing on investment cooperation, technology transfer, and the advancement of pre-engineered steel production. Another agreement was reached between Bangladesh Vietnam Development Assistance Company and the Bangladesh Pharmaceutical Association, with a specific focus on pharmaceutical exchange. Lastly, Huong Giang Aviation Services and the Bangladesh Tourism Association came together to establish a tourism alliance, marking a significant step in enhancing tourism ties between the two nations.
As part of his official three-day tour, Vuong Dinh Hue visited the state-of-the-art facilities of Beximco Pharma in Tongi, where he received an informative presentation and toured the manufacturing facility.
Bangladesh’s Commitment to SDGs Unshaken Despite Global Challenges, Says PM
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has reaffirmed her government’s unwavering commitment to implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), even in the face of challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, the Ukraine war, and the climate crisis. She made this declaration during a meeting with Helen Clark, Chair of the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (PMNCH), at the United Nations Headquarters.
As part of her commitment to healthcare services accessibility for all citizens, PM Sheikh Hasina mentioned the implementation of the National Health Sector Strategic Plan (2011-2030) and a 27% increase in healthcare sector allocations for the current fiscal year 2023-24.
Helen Clark commended Bangladesh’s exceptional progress in healthcare under Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s visionary leadership, citing the nation’s remarkable achievements in reducing maternal and child mortality rates and ensuring universal healthcare services.
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