Macron’s praise: Affirming Bangladesh’s success

Published : 13 Sep 2023 08:33 PM

In a historic visit, French President Emmanuel Macron arrived in Bangladesh on September 10, marking a significant milestone in the bilateral relations between the two nations. The visit not only emphasized the strengthening of diplomatic ties but also provided an opportunity for President Macron to acknowledge Bangladesh's remarkable journey towards upholding democratic values. 

President Macron's visit to Bangladesh holds profound significance in the context of France's broader strategic engagement in the "Indo-Pacific" region. This diplomatic endeavor underscores France's recognition of the region's growing importance in global geopolitics and trade dynamics. By cultivating stronger ties with Bangladesh, a pivotal player in South Asia, France is positioning itself strategically amidst the shifting dynamics of international relations. This visit opens a gateway of opportunities for both nations to expand their trade horizons, benefiting from each other's economic strengths and complementarities. Moreover, in a landscape where both the United States and China are vying for dominance in the region, France's outreach sends a clear signal of its intent to play a constructive and influential role in the Indo-Pacific. This move fosters a balanced multipolarity, promoting stability and prosperity in a region critical to the global economy.

Throughout his visit, President Macron participated in extensive deliberations with Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, centering on a diverse array of topics such as trade, climate change, education, and human rights. Two countries signed a couple of agreements aimed at deepening cooperation in various sectors, reaffirming their commitment to mutual progress and development.

President Macron lauded Bangladesh for its remarkable achievements, hailing it as a rapidly burgeoning economy and the eighth most populous nation globally, boasting a staggering population of over 170 million. His commendation underscores the incredible strides Bangladesh has made in terms of economic growth and demographic significance. This recognition from a world leader of Macron's stature not only acknowledges Bangladesh's impressive trajectory but also highlights its growing prominence on the global stage. It serves as a testament to the nation's resilience and determination in the face of numerous challenges, solidifying its position as a key player in the international community. The endorsement from a world leader of France's stature provides a boost to Bangladesh's standing on the global stage, reaffirming its commitment to the rule of law, human rights, and inclusive governance.

During a joint press conference, President Macron commended Bangladesh for its efforts in fostering economic growth, reducing poverty, and improving social indicators. He commended the nation's strides in establishing itself as a prominent country in the South Asian region.

Furthermore, the leaders discussed shared concerns about climate change and the urgent need for global cooperation to address this pressing issue. Bangladesh, a country highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, welcomed France's commitment to work closely with the nation in implementing sustainable solutions and technologies.

President Macron’s acknowledgment of Bangladesh's democratic 

journey serves as a testament to the nation’s unwavering dedication

 to the principles of democracy, human rights, and inclusive

 governance. This visit not only strengthens bilateral ties but also 

highlights the shared commitment of France and Bangladesh to a

 more inclusive, sustainable, and prosperous future for all

In a meaningful gesture, President Macron visited the Bangabandhu Memorial Museum, where he paid his respects to the Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. "I wished to honor Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, a man who devoted his life to the struggle for his nation's independence, its language, its culture, and the people of Bangladesh," he inscribed in the visitors' book in French during his visit. He also praised Bangladesh's rich cultural heritage and its significant contributions to the global community. The visit showcased the shared cultural ties between the two nations, further cementing the bond between France and Bangladesh.

As President Macron's visit concluded, both leaders expressed optimism about the future of Franco-Bangladeshi relations. The agreements signed during this visit are expected to pave the way for enhanced cooperation in various sectors, opening new avenues for economic growth and mutual prosperity.

While in Dhaka, President Macron and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina emphasized their joint dedication to upholding regional stability. Their shared commitment reflects a mutual interest in cultivating a safe and thriving environment. This pledge encompasses not only economic collaboration but also a broader aspiration for peace and stability across South Asia. The visit witnessed substantial progress in bilateral relations, highlighted by the signing of agreements pertaining to loans and satellite technology. This momentous step signals the commencement of a new phase in the partnership between France and Bangladesh.

President Macron's visit to Bangladesh could have a significant impact in the context of the nation's upcoming election. It provides a boost to the ruling party's image, showcasing its ability to foster strong international relations and attract influential leaders. This visit could potentially bolster public confidence in the current government's diplomatic prowess and its ability to navigate global affairs effectively. Moreover, the agreements and discussions held during the visit may lead to tangible benefits for the nation, which the ruling party could use as a strategic point in their election campaign. However, it's crucial to note that the true impact will ultimately depend on how effectively the government translates these diplomatic achievements into concrete policies that positively affect the lives of the citizens. The opposition, on the other hand, may use the visit to scrutinize the ruling party's policies and question whether these international engagements truly align with the needs and priorities of the Bangladeshi people. Overall, while the visit holds potential for political gains, its true impact on the upcoming election will unfold in the coming months.

President Macron's acknowledgment of Bangladesh's democratic journey serves as a testament to the nation's unwavering dedication to the principles of democracy, human rights, and inclusive governance. This visit not only strengthens bilateral ties but also highlights the shared commitment of France and Bangladesh to a more inclusive, sustainable, and prosperous future for all.

Pranab Kumar Panday is a Professor in the Department of Public Administration at the University of Rajshahi