Dhaka has sought close collaboration and strong partnership between Bangladesh and the United Nation and aspired to get substantial allocation from the UN’s response and recovery fund to manage the COVID-19 impact.
Foreign minister A K Abdul Momen made the urge while a five member UN country team led by its resident coordinator in Bangladesh Mia Seppo called on him at the State Guest House Jamuna on Wednesday, a foreign ministry press release said on Thursday.
During the meeting, Bangladesh foreign minister expressed hope that considering the large population size, Bangladesh should receive a substantial allocation from the UN’s response and recovery fund.
Fearing negative impact of pandemic in RMG and expatriate employment, the two mainstays of Bangladesh’s economy, Momen expressed concern about the returns of migrant workers and sought UN’s assistance for re-skilling, re-employment and re-integration of them.
Momen thanked the UN agencies for their continued support on the Rohingya issue, however, he also expressed deep concern that there was no progress in repatriation of Rohingyas to Myanmar.
The foreign minister pressed the UN to work with Myanmar more constructively under the framework of the existing tripartite mechanism.
He said the ongoing violence and continued military crackdown and resultant instability in the Rakhine province are forcing Myanmar nationals to flee and take perilous journeys by the land and sea in search for safety and security.
This has broader ramifications on the overall repatriation as Myanmar is failing to create conditions conducive for safe and sustainable return of the Rohingyas, he observed.
The foreign minister also highlighted the climate vulnerability of Bangladesh and reminded about the responsibility of the developed countries in mitigation of climatic impact in light of the Paris Agreement.
“Bangladesh as the current Chair of the Climate Vulnerable Forum will work with all concerned to ensure climate justice,” he vowed.
He also sought support from the UN bodies for the establishment of the Global climate adaptation centre as well as an Innovation and knowledge centre to promote South-South Cooperation.
Noting that despite the onslaught of COVID-19, Bangladesh successfully submitted on time its second Voluntary National Response of SDG implementation, Momen emphasized the need to have a coordinated partnership with the UN so that Bangladesh’s ongoing endeavours remain on track.
The UN team thanked the foreign minister for highlighting issues of importance to Bangladesh and providing guidance on how the UN agencies in Bangladesh can effectively partner with Bangladesh in its journey towards economic prosperity.
Seppo assured of the UN’s full support for Bangladesh to recover from the socio-economic shocks of the COVID-19.
They reiterated the UN’s commitment to remain seized with the issue of Rohingya repatriation including through engaging more constructively with Myanmar.
“The world has a lot to learn from Bangladesh on climate adaptation,” said the UN resident coordinator.