Staff Correspondent
Bangladesh is now emerged as a country of tremendous potential for economic development and is attracting more and more foreign companies for investment.
The country has developed rapidly and is now taking off its economy overcoming every difficulty since the independence.
Japan’s Ambassador to Bangladesh Hiroyasu Izumi made the observation while delivering speech at the reception to celebrate the birthday of the emperor of Japan Emperor Akihito, on the Embassy premises in Dhaka on Friday.
Mentioning that the seed of friendship between Bangladesh and Japan was implanted in 1975 he recalled: “Nearly 44 years ago, in February 1975, Their Majesties – the Emperor and Empress, as the Crown Prince and Princess then, stayed here in Dhaka on their return trip from Nepal.”
“Bangladesh was still a new born, fledgling nation, so was Japan-Bangladesh diplomatic relationship, just entered the third year of its establishment. The imperial visit successfully planted the seed of friendship between our two nations, that is, formed the solid bedrock of today’s excellent friendship. By the grace of Their Majesties, our relationship has grown from strength to strength,” said the envoy.
“We have committed to contribute to this country’s development to realize the dream of Bangladesh, Sonar Bangla,” he further said.
Japan has always been the single biggest bilateral donor for Bangladesh. The amount of ODA towards Bangladesh is around two hundred billion yen (equivalent to 1.8 billion US dollars) this year, which records the largest ever Yen Loan support to Bangladesh for one year, he mentioned.
And in coming years, we will renew our record year by year. Japan’s ODA to Bangladesh has increased so rapidly that Bangladesh is now the second largest recipient of Japan’s ODA in the world, next to India. This fact also attracts Japanese companies to Bangladesh increasingly, said the envoy.
AH M Mustafa Kamal, Minister for Planning, among others, was present at the programme.
Expressing his sincere welcome to all present at the reception he said, “His Majesty will turn 85 years old on December 23rd. I have a very special feeling for today, and it is my great pleasure and honor to host this reception, because His Majesty is going to abdicate next April after 30 years since His Majesty’s accession to the Throne. And the enthronement of His Imperial Highness the Crown Prince will take place in May next year.”
“I hereby express my deepest respect for their Majesties’ untiring efforts for many years. Long lives and Health for Their Majesties,” the envoy said.
“Japan has developed her economic growth, rising from the burned ground and ashes after the World War II,” he mentioned adding Bangladesh is now taking off her economy overcoming every difficulties.
“The seed of friendship we inherited from Their Majesties has germinated, grown up and now is likely to bloom beautifully,” said the envoy.
This year, we had lots of mutual visits of ministerial level. Kono, Foreign Minister made his second visit to Bangladesh following the last year, while Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali, Foreign Minister and Tofail Ahmed, Commerce Minister of Bangladesh visited Japan, he said.
“Next year, we will have more and more. We will nurture our flower of friendship and enhance bilateral relations towards the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations in 2022 including even higher level exchange,” pledged the envoy.
“We are time-tested friends since the independence of Bangladesh, and have walked together for the blight future of two countries. We are both countries of rising sun,” he mentioned saying “See our national flags.”