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Foreign Ministers of Bangladesh and Thailand term 7th Joint Commission a ‘major milestone’ in bilateral relations

Bangladesh-Thailand 7th Joint Commission held after two decades is a major milestone and a harbinger for a vibrant chapter in our bilateral relations”, agreed Bangladesh Foreign Minister A H Mahmood Ali and his Thai counterpart Mr. Don Pramudwinai in the concluding session of the 7th Bangladesh-Thailand Joint Commission on Cooperation held this morning at the State Guest House Padma. Thanking his The entire gamut of bilateral relations was discussed. Thailand’s Foreign Minister paid a rich tribute to the Father of Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and Bangladesh’s Foreign Minister paid high tribute the Thailand’s late King Bhumibal Adulyadej.

Foreign Minister A. H Mahmood Ali, MP led the Bangladesh delegation while Mr. Don Pramudwinai, Foreign Minister of Thailand led the Thai delegation. Thai Foreign Minister is currently visiting Bangladesh with an 18-member delegation.

Diplomatic visa exemption agreement, easing of tourist visa scheme for Bangladeshi tourists, creating a security dialogue for combatting transnational crimes, enhancing bilateral trade and investment and concluding a number of bilateral instruments on tourism, energy, ICT and digital economy, fisheries and livestock, sports and culture, agriculture , maritime and coastal shipping connectivity, mutual recognition of standards and Bangladesh’s membership bid to number of regional organizations including Mekong-Ganga Cooperation(MGC), Eat West Economic Corridor and ASEAN Sectoral Partnership were among the key agenda discussed. The Bangabandhu Chair in Thailand’s prestigious Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) under the endowment of the Bangladesh Government, to promote higher level applied research in innovative technologies in the energy sector of Bangladesh, was discussed at length.

Later, the Foreign Minister of Thailand paid a courtesy call on the Hon’ble Prime Minister and visited the Banabandhu Memorial Museum at Dhanmondi to pay respect the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. He is scheduled to leave Dhaka tomorrow, 07 July 2017.

While both sides agreed to work for increasing the bilateral trade volume which currently stands at around USD 1 Billion, Bangladesh requested Thailand to expand Duty Free Quota Free (DFQF) market access facility to include more Bangladeshi products having export potential to Thailand. Bangladesh also handed over a list of 36 products for Thailand’s consideration in the review of DFQF list in this year. Thai side agreed to give due consideration to the Bangladesh’s request.

Both sides expressed satisfaction at the cumulative Thai investment in Bangladesh to the tune of $USD 1.5 billion and recent investment proposal worth USD250 million in the energy sector. Bangladesh Foreign Minister invited fresh Thai investment in the tourism, Buddhist Circuit tourism, health, hospitality, food processing, taking advantage of the SEZs and IT park.
Bangladesh and Thailand agreed to work on the proposal for creating a bilateral mechanism of periodic “dialogue” for cooperation in preventing and combating Trans-National Crimes. They have discussed the proposal of establishing coastal shipping connectivity between Chittagong Port of Bangladesh and Ranong Port of Thailand and agreed to speed up the process. Bangladesh requested Thailand to revive the proposal of recruiting Bangladeshi skilled, semi-skilled and unskilled workers for the labour deficit sectors in Thailand.

Both sides agreed to establish the Joint Working Groups (JWG) on Agricultural cooperation and ICT and digital technology, update the existing Agreement on cooperation in the Fisheries sector, institutionalize cooperation in the energy sector through a Framework cooperation MoU, and work on proposed MOUs in the areas of Culture and Tourism.

Thailand appreciated Bangladesh’s desire to forge closer relations with the ASEAN and advised Bangladesh to enhance engagement with ARF, ACD and member countries of ASEAN. Thailand also agreed to support Bangladesh’s interest to join the regional connectivity initiatives including Mekong Ganga Cooperation, East West Economic Corridor and ASEAN Sectoral Partnership.

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Publish Date: 
Thursday, July 6, 2017