July 19, 2024, 1:58 am

Diplomatic correspondent

2024-07-11 15:06:30 BdST

China backs Bangladesh's Southern Development Plan: Joint Statement

China has supported Bangladesh's plan to implement the Southern Integrated Development Initiatives (SIDI) under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative to help this region achieve balanced and sustainable development.

Chinese enterprises will be encouraged to take an active part in the construction of subways, metro rail and roads, oil and gas exploration, hospitals and water resources and sewage management projects in Bangladesh in a proper way, according to a joint statement issued after Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s July 8-10 official visit to Beijing.

Bangladesh and China will accelerate existing cooperation projects, continue to expand areas of cooperation, and work toward more fruitful outcomes in practical cooperation between the two countries.

The two sides agreed to advance projects such as the Burn Unit in Chattogram Medical College Hospital, the No. 6 Bangladesh-China Friendship Bridge Renovation, the No. 9 Bangladesh-China Friendship Bridge and the National Emergency Operation Center in Bangladesh.

The Chinese side expressed readiness to continue providing assistance to Bangladesh to the best of its capacity and positively consider the possibility of building hospitals and bridges and renovating convention centres to support the economic and social development of Bangladesh.

The Chinese side will continue to provide support for training programmes on human resources development of Bangladesh under the framework of “China Aid.”

The Bangladesh side expressed appreciation for China’s support for Bangladesh’s economic and social development, and applauded the important role played by the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in promoting the socio-economic development of the people of Bangladesh.

The Chinese side commended Bangladesh for being the first country in South Asia to join and take part in the BRI.

The two sides agreed to step up experience sharing on development planning and economic development policies, and further deepen high-quality Belt and Road cooperation under the principle of planning together, building together and benefiting together.

The two sides recognised the completion of the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Tunnel under Karnaphuli river, the Modernisation of Telecommunication Network Project, Development of ICT Infra-Network for Bangladesh Government Phase-III (Info-Sarker 3) and the Single Point Mooring (SPM) with Double Pipeline Project, and expressed satisfaction with the progress in major bilateral cooperation projects, such as the Padma Bridge Rail Link Project, the Project of Expansion and Strengthening of Power System Network under DPDC Area, the Power Grid Network Strengthening Project under PGCB, the Dhaka-Ashulia Elevated Expressway and the Rajshahi Surface Water Treatment Plant Project.

The two sides agreed to push forward projects such as Expansion of Teletalk’s 4G Mobile Broadband Network up to Union Level, Procurement of New Vessels, Water Supply, Sanitation, Drainage, Solid Waste and Faecal Sludge Management for Small Size Pourashavas (Municipalities) in Bangladesh, and Sewage Collection System under Dasherkandi STP Catchment of Dhaka City.

At the invitation of Li Qiang, premier of the State Council of the People’s Republic of China, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina paid an official visit to China from July 8 to 10.

During the visit, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina had a meeting with Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China, held talks with Premier Li Qiang, and met with Wang Huning, Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference.

The two sides had an in-depth exchange of views on bilateral relations and international and regional issues of mutual interest, and reached extensive consensus.

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