Dhaka, Riyadh emphasise boosting Saudi investment


Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia emphasised increasing Saudi investment in Bangladesh during the second round of political consultations between the two countries held on Monday in Riyadha foreign ministry's press release said.

Bangladesh Foreign Minister Hasan Mahmud and his Saudi Arabian counterpart, Prince Faisal bin Farhan, led their respective delegations during the consultation meeting.

The discussions focused on enhancing Saudi investment in Bangladesh's special economic zones and exploring opportunities for Saudi funds to be deposited in Bangladesh's offshore accounts.

Both leaders underscored the necessity of energizing the activities of the Bangladesh-Saudi Arabia Joint Business Council (JBC) to boost commercial relations between the two nations.

Prime Minister's Private Industry and Investment Adviser Salman F Rahman, Bangladesh Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Mohammad Javed Patwary, Additional Foreign Secretary Md. Nazrul Islam, Foreign Ministry's Director General (West Asia) Md Shafiqur Rahman, and Director General (FMO) Md. Arif Nazmul Hasan, as well as Saudi officials, were present at the meeting.

The two foreign ministers also discussed special privileges for Bangladesh in importing oil from Saudi Arabia.

Hasan expressed gratitude to Saudi Arabia for hosting and providing employment to nearly three million Bangladeshis.

There was a fruitful discussion on forming a joint task force to bring more transparency in the export of Bangladeshi manpower to Saudi Arabia and to stop workers' harassment by vested interests, said the release.

Hasan requested special registration opportunities for Bangladeshi expatriates doing business in Saudi Arabia.

Besides, the Saudi Foreign Minister assured cooperation when Bangladesh sought assistance in the repatriation of the displaced Rohingyas to Myanmar.

They also stressed the importance of united efforts by the Muslim world to end Israeli brutality in Gaza.

During the one-and-a-half-hour cordial meeting, they also discussed the upcoming visit of Saudi Crown Prince and Prime Minister Mohammed bin Salman to Bangladesh.

The two foreign ministers also decided to adopt a joint action plan to properly celebrate the golden jubilee of Saudi-Bangladesh diplomatic relations next year.

The meeting also decided to elevate the meeting of the Bangladesh-Saudi Arabia Joint Commission to the ministerial level.

After the meeting, a luncheon was hosted by the Saudi Foreign Minister in honor of his Bangladeshi counterpart.