Rahman underscored business-to-business and people-to-people contacts as the key elements for enhanced economic cooperation between the two countries, said the Bangladesh Embassy in Washington D.C. on Friday.

He reiterated Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s earlier offer of dedicated Economic Zone for the US investors.

The adviser also encouraged the US Information and Technology (IT) companies to invest in the Hi-Tech Parks by taking advantage of the large pool of freelancers in Bangladesh.

State Minister for Foreign Affairs Md. Shahriar Alam stated that continuity of coherent policies under the visionary leadership of Hasina was the key to Bangladesh’s tremendous socioeconomic progress during the past 13 years.

They discussed the issues at the second high-level economic consultation between Bangladesh and the United States held at the US Department of State in Washington D.C on Thursday.

Salman and Jose W. Fernandez, US State Department Under Secretary for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment, co-chaired the daylong meeting.

The Bangladesh delegation also included Shahriar Alam, Ahmad Kaikaus, principal secretary to the prime minister, Shafiul Islam Mohiuddin, MP, Begum Shamsun Nahar, MP, M Shahidul Islam, Bangladesh ambassador to the United States, and other senior officials of the government.

Deputy Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asia Ambassador Kelly Keiderling, Assistant US Trade Representative Christopher Wilson, Deputy Under Secretary for International Affairs, Department of Labour Thea Lee and other senior officials of the relevant US departments were in the US side.

Under Secretary Jose W. Fernandez applauded Bangladesh’s remarkable economic growth and tremendous success in Covid-19 vaccination.

Recognising the progress made in Bangladesh’s labour sector, Fernandez proposed for a regular consultation mechanism to remain engaged on the labour issues.

In the second session on the labour issues, ILO Country Director in Bangladesh Tuomo Poutiainen made an independent presentation on the progress Bangladesh made in the labour sector.

Worker’s rights Coordinator of the American Federation of Labour & Congress of Industrial Organisations (AFL-CIO) Laura Gutierrez, Solidarity Center Executive Director Shawna Bader-Blau and Bangladesh labour representative Kazi Rahima Akter attended this session.

Both sides discussed a range of other issues including cooperation on climate change, renewable energy, maritime and blue economy, Covid-19, tourism & hospitality, and civil aviation.

Bangladesh side mentioned that the resumption of Dhaka-New York direct Biman flight is a priority for the government and drew US attention for expeditious action on the matter.

They agreed to work in close cooperation to resume the flight as early as possible.

Both sides agreed on the importance of enhanced people-to-people contact in strengthening bilateral relations.

Shahriar drew the attention of the US side to expedite visa processing for the students and the businesspeople from Bangladesh.

Both sides agreed to hold the 3rd round of the consultation in 2023 in Dhaka at a mutually convenient time.

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