Japanese Ambassador Ito Naoki has said Japan will continue to extend its cooperation for the development of Bangladesh and for enhancing regional connectivity, and work closely with Bangladesh to realise a ‘free and open Indo-Pacific’.
In a congratulatory message on the occasion of Golden Jubilee of Independence, he hoped that both Japan and Bangladesh will enjoy further prosperity and the friendly relations among peoples of the two countries.Mentioning about the mega projects funded by Japan, he said Dhaka Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) Line 6 will be partially open in December this year. After that, Special Economic Zone in Araihazar, Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport Expansion, Matarbari Deep Sea Port and Power Plant Stations, as well as Bangabandhu Railway Bridge will start operating.
The completion of these projects will change the face of the nation and profoundly contribute to the stability and prosperity of Bangladesh.
Moreover, the stability and prosperity of Bangladesh, which is located at the junction of India and ASEAN, is extremely important for the stability and prosperity of the entire Indo-Pacific region.
From the very beginning of the independence, Japan has contributed to the development of Bangladesh in various fields, ranging from grassroots support, human resource development to infrastructure building with joint collaboration efforts of government and private sectors.
Bangladesh’s current efforts for providing shelters to “Rohingya” refugees from Myanmar and working towards the early repatriation of the refugees are worthy of our appreciation. Japan will spare no effort to extend its support to that end.
On the last 50 years, Japan has always supported Bangladesh and worked together to realize the “Golden Bengal” of which Bangabandhu dreamed.This continuous cooperation has never faded even during the current Covid-19 crisis. Last August, the Japanese government agreed to provide Bangladesh government with the Covid-19 Crisis Response Emergency Budget Support Loan for JPY 35 billion (Approximately USD 330 million).
In addition, Japan provided medical equipment for healthcare sectors as well as emergency support through international organizations.
Furthermore, in the same month, the largest ever annual yen loan package of JPY 338 billion (approximately USD 3.2 billion)(for Official Development Assistance (ODA) from Japan to Bangladesh) was signed.
From this year, which marks the 50th anniversary of the independence, JICA’s projects of large scale infrastructure will be completed one after another to promote Bay of Bengal Industrial Growth Belt (BIG-B) initiative.
The year of 2022 will mark the 50thanniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and Bangladesh.
Toward this milestone year, for further strengthening bilateral relations, “I, in close cooperation with the government and citizens of Bangladesh, will make the utmost effort to improve the business environment for further promoting of trade and investment, as well as to further deepen mutual understanding and exchange of the peoples between Japan and Bangladesh.”