Bangladesh, Ireland hold 1st foreign office consultation in Dublin


BSS photo

Bangladesh and Ireland held their first-ever Foreign Office Consultation (FOC) in Dublin on Monday and signed the first memorandum of understanding (MoU) on biennial consultation between the foreign ministries of two countries.

The FOC held at the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs, where Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen and his Irish counterpart Secretary-General Joseph Hackett led their respective delegations, said a press release received in Dhaka on Tuesday. 

This would be the first time any agreement has been signed in the 52 years of diplomatic relations between Bangladesh and Ireland.

Bangladesh Ambassador to Ireland Saida Muna Tasneem attended the FOC along with officials from the foreign ministry and Bangladesh High Commission, London. 

The foreign secretary said that he had a very fruitful discussion with his Irish counterpart covering the entire gamut of bilateral relations including political and humanitarian support demonstrated by the Irish people and politicians during Bangladesh's Liberation War in 1971.

He also underlined the importance of admission of more Bangladeshi students by Irish universities and recruiting meritorious IT professionals from Bangladesh in the Irish tech industry under the EU talent partnerships. 

The foreign secretary paid tributes to former Irish Foreign Minister Seán MacBride who created an inquiry commission seeking justice on the brutal assassination of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

Recalling the very recent official visit of Irish Enterprise, Trade and Employment Minister Simon Coveney to Bangladesh on the occasion of the Irish St. Patrick's Day, Secretary General Joe reiterated the commitment of the Irish Government towards forward-looking and positive engagements with Bangladesh including in the areas of trade, investment, recruitment of health professionals and climate change. 

The Irish secretary general praised the tremendous growth and socio-economic progress achieved by Bangladesh over the past decade and a half under Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and thanked her for her extraordinary humanitarian gesture of hosting more than a million Rohingyas from Myanmar. 

The two foreign secretaries further underscored the need for opening embassies in their respective capitals at the earliest to maximize the potentials of emerging bilateral collaborations.

Besides, they discussed exploring new opportunities for enhancing bilateral cooperation in trade, investment, gainful employment, migration and mobility, and the welfare of nearly twenty thousand Bangladeshi Diaspora living in Ireland. 

The two sides also discussed future climate cooperation bilaterally and multilaterally including the loss and damage fund, adaptation, and investments into renewable energy especially offshore wind energy plants in Bangladesh. 

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