B'desh, India must invest for each other's futures: FM

B’desh, India must invest for each other’s futures: FM


Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali on Saturday said Bangladesh and India must invest for each other’s futures and work together to make the best use of India’s northeast’s potential ensuring a win-win situation.
“The destinies of our two people are inextricably linked. This is even more relevant for the northeast. We must invest for each other’s futures,” he told a function in the city.Bangladesh Itihash Sammilani arranged the two-day conference titled ‘1971 and North-Eastern Indian States: Historicising and Contemporising Relationship’ at the Abdul Karim Sahitya Bisharad auditorium of Bangla Academy.
Prof Mesbah Kamal and Indian High Commissioner in Dhaka Pankaj Saran also spoke at the inaugural session of the conference with noted educationist and prominent writer Prof Muntasir Mamun in the chair.
Speaking as the chief guest, the Foreign Minister said Bangladesh needs to complement India’s endeavour to develop its northeastern states for its own interest.
“Development of the northeast has an important security dimension which we shouldn’t lose the sight of. It’ll ultimately be a win-win situation,” said Mahmood.
Given the abundance of natural resources in India’s north-east, he said its huge economic potentials remains untapped.
“Due to our geographical contiguity, we’re in the best position to do so.”
The Foreign Minister said natural resources and raw materials of India’s northeast can be imported to Bangladesh for value addition and re-exported to India or elsewhere.
“This is taking place but needs to be done on a much larger scale.
The business communities of both the countries could think about more investment in the region in different potential sectors,” he said.
On connectivity, the Foreign Minister said India’s northeast comes as an important link of connectivity as part of Bangladesh’s plan to establish it as a bridge between South Asia and South-East Asia and beyond.
“We’re working on establishing links with the northeast through reviving old rail links, opening up new Land Customs Stations/Land Ports/Immigration points or reviving old ones, revamping trade infrastructures, looking at new road connectivity or reviving old ones,” he said.
Mahmood Ali hoped that there will be direct air link between Dhaka and Guwahati soon. “We’ve requested the government of India to allow us to open a Deputy High Commission in Guwahati and upgrade our Agartala Visa Office to an Assistant High Commission to increase our diplomatic and commercial presence in the northeast.”
The Foreign Minister also said work is on by both sides to preserve the graves of the valiant freedom fighters of Bangladesh sparsed along the border of Bangladesh and north-east India or to bring back their mortal remains to Bangladesh. – UNB


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