Sri Lanka and Bangladesh look at further collaboration in shipping sector
Sri Lanka and Bangladesh have reportedly discussed further collaboration in the shipping sector during a meeting between Sri Lanka’s Foreign Minister Prof G.L. Peiris and Bangladesh State Minister of Shipping holding Cabinet rank Khalid Mahmud Chowdhury. The meeting was a follow-up to Peiris’ meeting with Foreign Minister of Bangladesh Dr. A.K. Abdul Momen.
With shipping being one of the key areas selected for collaboration between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, Ministers Peiris and Chowdhury have agreed that enhanced cooperation between Chittagong and Sri Lankan ports would represent a win-win situation for both countries due to the saving of both time and financial resources if a transit hub in Sri Lanka were to be utilised for access into the Gulf and the Mediterranean, local media reports stated.
The Bangladesh Minister has outlined the importance being attached by Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to the subject of shipping in Bangladesh, with initiatives for the development of several other ports including Matarbari in Cox’s Bazar District, which is being developed as a deep sea port with the assistance of Japan.
The Ministers have further decided that the next step would be the early convening of the Joint Working Group since the last meeting was in Dhaka in 2014 and it was proposed that a meeting be held in Colombo in the early months of 2022.
Minister Peiris has said that he would discuss the matter with his colleague, the Minister of Ports and Shipping, and facilitate arrangements for the early convening of the Joint Working Group.
Sri Lanka and Bangladesh enjoy strong bilateral and trade ties while both countries are looking at further strengthening ties. Sri Lanka’s geographical positioning in the Indian Ocean and the many trade agreements as well as concessions enjoyed by the country have helped boost the country as an emerging business/investment destination in the South Asian region. With Bangladesh becoming a strong economy in the region, businesses/investors in Bangladesh could explore the growing opportunities in Sri Lanka. With the resilience shown by Sri Lanka’s economy amidst the Covid pandemic and the growth momentum shown by several key economic sectors, Bangladeshi businesses could look at setting up base in Sri Lanka to engage with other countries or look at forming partnerships or joint ventures with local businesses.
|Article Code :||VBS/AT/02122021/Z_3|