China calls for joint promotion of Belt Road Initiative by pitching closer ties with Bangladesh

In order to take the strategic partnership of the two countries to ‘new heights’, saying he stands ‘ready’ with the leaders of Bangladesh – Chinese President Xi Jinping wants to ‘better align’ the two countries’ strategies and jointly promote the construction of his multi-billion dollar Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

These comments were made by Xi in an exchange of congratulatory messages with the Bangladeshi PM Mohammad Abdul Hamid, on the 45th anniversary of the establishment of the bilateral diplomatic relationship on Sunday.

Saying he is ‘ready to work’ with Hamid to better align development strategies with Bangladesh in his message, Xi hailed the ‘steady and long-term friendship’ citing the step up cooperation under the framework of the BRI and push forward the China-Bangladesh strategic, cooperative partnership to a new level, according to media reports.

Bangladesh is one of the largest recipients of China’s massive infrastructure project, with over USD 26 billion Chinese investments and USD 38 billion dollars funding commitments.

China has also offered zero-tariff treatment to 97 per cent of Bangladesh’s exports by adding 5,161 more items to the existing list of 3,095 duty-free products. The BRI seeks to build rail, maritime and road links from Asia to Europe and Africa in a revival of ancient Silk Road trading routes.

Bangladesh also is among over a dozen countries where the final phase of clinical trials of Chinese vaccine is being conducted.

In his message, Hamid said the Bangladesh-China relationship is ‘developing rapidly and has covered cooperation in key areas’, to which Dhaka attached ‘great importance’, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

He expressed his deep appreciation for China’s continuous support for Bangladesh in its socio-economic development progress, adding that he believes the close and friendly relationship between the two countries will continue to deepen in the future.


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