Monday, 15 August, 2022

Padma Bridge Bangladesh’s pride, says Japanese envoy

Padma Bridge Bangladesh’s pride, says Japanese envoy

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Congratulating the government and people of Bangladesh on the completion of the Padma Bridge with its own funding, Japanese Ambassador Ito Naoki said the bridge is a pride for the country and an important milestone for its development journey.

“This demonstrates what Bangladesh can do with the economic development and stability of the nation. This is the bridge of a national dream and pride. This bridge will truly fulfil the growth potential of Bangladesh. I would like to commend the work and efforts done by those involved in the project,” he said.

In an interview with the Daily Sun, Ambassador Ito said the overall connectivity across the nation will be enhanced by the Padma Bridge and it will particularly vitalize the economy in the Southern part of Bangladesh, making the rural economy vibrant.

He said the Bridge will expand the radius of people’s movement and facilitate the transportation of goods. Its economic impact is enormous.

“Bangladesh achieved 100 per cent electrification this year, and the Dhaka Metro will start operation in December. The year 2022 will be remembered by the world with many examples of quality infrastructure building, including the Padma Bridge inauguration,” said the Ambassador of Japan to Bangladesh.

Mentioning Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s visit to Japan in 1996, he said Bangladesh Prime Minister made a request with the Japanese side for cooperation on two bridges – Padma Bridge and Rupsha Bridge.

He said Rupsha Bridge was constructed with the cooperation of Japan. As for Padma Bridge, while JICA conducted the feasibility study, the government of Bangladesh constructed the bridge on its own.

“It is Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's far-sighted vision and political astuteness. I had a chance to meet her on June 21 and conveyed my heartfelt congratulations to her in person,” he said, adding “It is gratifying that Japan was able to be a part of this project at the very beginning, and the Bridge has now been completed.”

Over the last 50 years, the Japanese envoy said building bridges has been the mainstay of Japan’s cooperation, and the Jamuna Bridge was the idea of Bangabandhu.

“It became a symbol of Japan-Bangladesh friendship and it was printed on Tk 100 banknote. JICA is now working on Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Railway Bridge over Jamuna River and it will further enhance rail connectivity between Dhaka and border areas.”

So far, Japan has constructed 134 bridges across Bangladesh, Ambassador Ito added.

He said Japan will continue to cooperate with Bangladesh for its development and will stand by the country in its development journey until the day Bangladesh fulfils ‘Vision 2041’ and realises the vision of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman to build “Sonar Bangla”.