Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has recently completed a four-day visit to Italy which will play a significant role in future diplomacy for ‘new’ Europe. Although this year’s first bilateral visit of the Prime Minister of Bangladesh has not been much discussed with the public, we think it has made some important points. It is to be remembered that since Europe entered the post-Brexit era, Italy is an important party in the European Union which we need to view.
Italy has the highest number of Bangladeshi migrants, followed by the UK, which is economically and culturally the closest to Bangladesh. We expect Italy to accept more Bangladeshi migrants. The faster the process of exporting Bangladesh’s manpower becomes, especially in the agricultural sector, the better it is. The fact that our bilateral trade with the country has already exceeded two billion euros is laudable.
Italy has the highest number of
followed by the
UK, which is economically and
culturally the closest to Bangladesh
Bangladesh can benefit from the role that Italy plays in foreign trade. We see that the bilateral meeting with the Prime Minister of the country, Giuseppe Conte, discussions took place about duty-free access to various export products, including the garment sector and pharmaceutical industry. If Italy takes a strong role, duty-free access could be sustained. We would like to see the two countries working more closely in this regard in the days ahead.
With the help of the Rohingya who have taken refuge in Bangladesh, Italy can come forward either single handedly or jointly. We think that diplomacy is an option for us to exploit the possibilities that have been opened through the Prime Minister’s visit to Italy. We would like to recommend the same to other countries in Europe.
In the new reality there is no alternative to further diplomatic relations with new levels and targets. The meeting of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina with Vatican City head of state Pope, and the opening of a new Chancery building at the Bangladesh Embassy in Rome, is a reminder of our expanding and strong presence in Europe.