Bangladesh PM To Begin 4-Day India Visit From Today. Defence, Trade & River Sharing Among Top Agenda

Bangladesh PM To Begin 4-Day India Visit From Today. Defence, Trade & River Sharing Among Top Agenda

New Delhi: Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, who will begin her four-day trip to India on Monday, will focus on unveiling a series of measures to boost cooperation between the two nations in areas of defence, trade and river water sharing. Bangladesh Prime Minister will also call on President Droupadi Murmu and Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankar during the visit scheduled from Monday to Thursday.

On Thursday, Hasina will travel to Ajmer in Rajasthan for a visit to the Dargah of the revered Sufi saint Moinuddin Chishti, according to news agency PTI. 

Hasina’s delegation will comprise Foreign Minister A K Abdul Momen, Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi, Railways Minister Md Nurul Islam Sujan, Liberation War Minister A K M Mozammel Haq and Mashiur AKM Rahman, the economic affairs advisor to the PM.

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Both countries will announce measures to enhance cooperation in areas of defence, trade, river water sharing and in some other areas, PTI cited sources as saying.

Bangladesh, India Likely To Ink 7 Pacts During PM Hasina’s Visit: Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen

Bangladesh and India are expected to sign several agreements, including the interim sharing of the Kushiyara river water following talks between Hasina and Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday.

Both nations are expected to sign seven pacts in areas including water management, railway and science and technology during Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s visit to New Delhi beginning Monday, said Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen as quoted in Daily Star newspaper, reported news agency PTI. The two sides will also discuss fuel oil, the minister added.

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Apart from this, memorandum of understanding (MoU) will be focused on sectors like water management, science and technology, railway, law, information and broadcasting among others, noted the minister.

“However, the discussion on the MoUs is ongoing. Their numbers could even increase,” added the minister.

Issues related to security cooperation, investment, enhanced trade relations, power and energy sector cooperation, water sharing of common rivers, water resources management, border management, combating drug smuggling and human trafficking are likely to remain in focus during the talks, PTI report quoted from the Daily Star newspaper.

Both countries finalised the text of the agreement on interim sharing of the water of the Kushiyara river. The text of the MoU was finalised at the 38th ministerial-level meeting of the India-Bangladesh Joint Rivers Commission (JRC) in Delhi on August 25.

India and Bangladesh share 54 rivers, of which seven were identified earlier for developing a framework of water-sharing agreements on priority.

Bangladesh remains India’s biggest trade partner in South Asia and the bilateral trade has seen a rise from $9 billion to $18 billion in the last five years.  Bangladesh has become the fourth largest export destination for India with the exports registering a growth of over 66 per cent from $9.69 billion in 2020-21 to $16.15 billion in 2021-22.

Hasina will be visiting India after three years. She has last visited New Delhi in October 2019.

Her visit is significant in the wake of the Ukraine crisis, global economic downturn and ongoing Covid-19 pandemic as the two South Asian neighbours look towards enhanced cooperation to overcome the challenges, Momen said.