Huge investment from Saudi Arabia

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) is likely to invest $50 billion in different sectors of Bangladesh as relationship bolsters to new height. Saudi Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Labour and Social Development Mahir Abdul Rahman Gassim made the statement to newsmen after attending a Joint Commission (JC) with Bangladeshi Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal at Finance Ministry’s Agargaon office on Wednesday.

ERD Secretary Monowar Ahmed led a team comprised of representatives and officials from different Ministries on the Bangladesh side while Saudi Deputy Minister Mahir Abdul Rahman Gassim led the 40 member delegation from KSA. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said, “The bilateral relationship with KSA has transferred into friendship over the last half a century.”

“It has been better than ever under the able leadership of our Hon’ble Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and the Kingdom of KSA,” he informed. Bangladesh is now eying to go beyond the level of friendship to continue the effective partnership towards sustainable development, he said adding that, Bangladesh is expecting and continues to increase support from its bilateral friends and development partners.

The Finance Minister also said Bangladesh is hosting this JC at the optimum time when the country is cruising well in its pursuit of development. At the same time, this year (2020), the whole nation is celebrating the Birth Centenary of the Father of the Nation, the most acclaimed Bangal in 100 years, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

However, the country is also expecting to receive bigger investments in different economic sectors of the country, he said. The Finance Minister added, “Bangladesh is looking forward to the ensured support to the capacity building and sustainability, foreign direct investment to contribute to employment, growth and poverty reduction realigning the development partner's country strategies with enhanced fund provisions for SDG which are consistent with the Bangladesh's strategies and policies envisaged in the Perspective Plan 2041, the Eighth Five Year Plan and other national plans and policies.”

Different agendas and bilateral areas of cooperation have been included in the 13th JC session. The meeting’s agendas were manpower and employment, economic and commercial relationship development, investment and industry, power and energy, religious affairs, tourism information, communication technology, agriculture and fisheries, health services and education and various miscellaneous issues.

However, after the establishment of diplomatic relationship between BD and KSA an agreement was signed for the bilateral Co-operation between the countries. A Joint Commission (JC) has been established based on that mutual agreement. The JC already held 12 sessions alternatively in Bangladesh and KSA. The last (12th) JC was held at Riyadh, KSA on 14-15 March 2018.