The First-ever Foreign Office Consultations (FOC) between Bangladesh and Ethiopia was held on Tuesday in the capital city, according to a press release of the External Publicity Wing of Foreign Affairs Ministry.
Foreign secretary Shahidul Haque led the Bangladesh delegation while the Ethiopian delegation was led by its Ambassador Mahlet Hailu Guadye, also the Permanent Secretary of Ethiopian Foreign Ministry.
The meeting took place in a friendly and cordial atmosphere. The talks covered the whole gamut of bilateral issues including political relations and enhanced cooperation especially in the fields of trade & investment, education, culture, agriculture, textiles, pharmaceuticals and peace-keeping under the UN.
The Bangladesh head of delegation shared some of the economic and social sector success stories of the country under the able leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. He informed the Ethiopian delegation about the provisions and privileges of foreign investment in Bangladesh. Both sides discussed the various matters of the bilateral agenda, possible areas of cooperation and also stressed on the need for framework for co-operation and consultation.
The officials also focused on regional and global issues of mutual interest. The Ethiopian Foreign Secretary applauded the remarkable socio-economic growth of Bangladesh in the recent years. Both sides agreed to work in the bilateral, regional and international fora, in particular in the peace keeping area.
Before consultations, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Bilateral Consultations between the Foreign Ministry of Bangladesh and the Foreign Ministry of Ethiopia was signed by the respective Foreign Secretaries of the two countries.
Ambassador of Bangladesh to Ethiopia, Director General (Africa) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and a number of senior officials from different government ministries and organizations were also present at the FOC.
Both Bangladesh and Ethiopia agreed to continue Foreign Office Consultations on a regular basis at each other’s capital. The next round of FOC between the two countries would take place at a mutually convenient date and time in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.