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Strong ties between Denmark and Bangladesh continue

Political Consultations
From the left: Refika Hayta, Deputy Head of Mission at the Danish Embassy - Martin Bille Hermann, State Secretary of Development Cooperation - Mikael Hemniti Winther, Ambassador of Denmark to Bangladesh.

Foreign Secretary of Bangladesh Md. Shahidul Haque welcomed State Secretary of the Danish Development Cooperation, Martin Bille Hermann, on November 14 to discuss the present Rohingya crisis and bilateral relations within trade, development and other topics.

Martin Bille Hermann praised Bangladesh for having performed a great task by taking in the hundreds of thousands Rohingyas who have fled Myanmar since the influx began on August 25. Denmark was one of the first responding donors to the on-going crisis and has so far committed over DKK 120 million (USD 18.7 million) for humanitarian relief of the Rohingya refugees through UN agencies and NGO’s.

At the meeting, the two counterparts signed a political declaration regarding Denmark’s support to the local communities in Cox’s Bazar. The fast and sudden Rohingya influx, repeating floods and cyclones during the monsoon have put severe pressure on livelihoods in Cox’s Bazar. Thus, Denmark has allocated an additional DKK 33 million (USD 5.2 million) to the existing Country Programme which includes agricultural education, climate change adaptation and human rights support to the local people in Cox’s Bazar.

Md. Shahidul Haque and Martin Bille Hermann also discussed the mutual development cooperation where Bangladesh has made impressive achievements. The Danish State Secretary congratulated Bangladesh for its results within poverty reduction, access to education and health as some of the most significant results.On the same note, the Danish State Secretary underlined the importance of collaboration on fulfilment of the Sustainable Development Goals. As a part of the cooperation, Denmark and Bangladesh hosted a joint Green Growth Conference in April in Dhaka where experts from both countries discussed how Bangladesh can embark upon a green transition as Denmark has undergone.

The two officials also had the chance to discuss bilateral trade between Denmark and Bangladesh. Trade between the two countries has doubled over the last five years and it seems clear that the cooperation is moving from aid to trade.

Migration, human rights and the upcoming elections were among other important subjects that were discussed during the meeting.

This press release was first published by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bangladesh.