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Bangladesh Published At: 07 Jul 2024, 21:47 p.m.

PM Hasina leaves for China on Monday

File photo

20 MoUs to be signed

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is set to embark on her first visit to China since securing her fourth consecutive term in office. The visit aims to elevate the bilateral relationship between Bangladesh and China to a “new level,” according to officials.

Expected MoUs and Areas of Cooperation During the four-day visit, at least 20 memorandums of understanding (MoUs) are expected to be signed. These MoUs will cover a wide range of sectors including:

  • Economic and banking
  • Trade and investment
  • Digital economy
  • Infrastructure development
  • Disaster management
  • Construction of the sixth and ninth Bangladesh-China friendship bridges
  • Agricultural exports
  • Enhancing people-to-people connectivity

High-Level Discussions Prime Minister Hasina will hold discussions with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Qiang. The discussions will focus on:

  • Deepening traditional friendship
  • Expanding mutually beneficial cooperation
  • Addressing regional and international issues of mutual interest

Statements from Officials Foreign Minister Dr. Hasan Mahmud expressed optimism about the visit, highlighting China’s commitment to being an important partner in Bangladesh’s infrastructure and economic development. He stated, “We are hopeful that the upcoming visit will be successful and fruitful, taking the strategic relations to the next level.”

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning emphasized China’s readiness to work with Bangladesh to advance high-quality Belt and Road cooperation and implement the Global Development, Security, and Civilization Initiatives.

Historical Context The bilateral relationship between Bangladesh and China has evolved significantly over the years. Initially opposed to Bangladesh's independence in 1971, China recognized Bangladesh as an independent country on August 31, 1975. The relationship was further strengthened during President Xi Jinping's visit to Dhaka in 2016, when the two countries upgraded their relationship to a "Strategic Cooperation Partnership."

Current Visit Itinerary Prime Minister Hasina’s itinerary includes meetings with several high-level Chinese officials and participation in various events:

  • July 8: Departure from Dhaka and arrival in Beijing.
  • July 9: Meeting with the President of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, participation in the "Summit on Trade, Business and Investment Opportunities between Bangladesh and China," and a meeting with the Chairman of the 14th National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).
  • July 10: Meeting with Chinese Premier Li Qiang at the Great Hall of the People, bilateral meeting, signing of MoUs, and meeting with President Xi Jinping.
  • July 11: Departure from China and arrival in Dhaka.

Future Prospects The visit is expected to further strengthen the strategic partnership between Bangladesh and China, with both countries aiming to enhance cooperation in various sectors and address mutual interests in regional and international contexts.