2 years ago

Bangladesh, Sri Lanka for early conclusion of PTA to boost trade

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Bangladesh and Sri Lanka have laid emphasis on the early conclusion of the Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) with the hope that it will “widen” the bilateral trade significantly between the two countries.

Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen and his Sri Lankan counterpart Prof. G.L Peiris had a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the 18th BIMSTEC ministerial meeting in Colombo on Tuesday.

They discussed areas of cooperation including diversification and expansion of the export basket, reports UNB.

The negotiations over the PTA are at an advanced stage, said Secretary (East) Mashfee Binte Shams, who attended the meeting.

Rector of Bangladesh Foreign Service Academy Asad Alam Siam and High Commissioner of Bangladesh to Sri Lanka Tareq Md Ariful Islam were also present.

The Sri Lankan foreign minister highly commended the great leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for her policy against terrorism and violent extremism.

Foreign minister Momen stressed initiating regular commercial shipping lines and cruise shipping for enhancement of trade and people-to-people contacts.

He also pointed out that the high price of air tickets is creating barriers to promoting tourism between the two South Asian countries.

The Sri Lankan foreign minister emphasized and echoed the position of Bangladesh leadership for better utilisation of Colombo port for transportation of Bangladeshi goods for the benefit of both sides.

Both the foreign ministers agreed to work together in various regional and multilateral fora for common benefits.

Momen thanked his Sri Lankan counterpart for the warm hospitality and congratulated him for hosting the BIMSTEC Summit preceded by the ministerial meeting and the senior officials meeting.

The Sri Lankan foreign minister recalled his visit to Dhaka last year in November and his meeting with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

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