The First ever Foreign Office Consultation (FOC) between Bangladesh and Oman was held on virtual platform today (08 June 2021). Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen led 12-member Bangladesh delegation including representatives from the Ministry Home Affairs, Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment, Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism, Armed Forces Division and Bangladesh Ambassador to Oman.
Undersecretary Sheikh Khalifa Alharthy led the Omani delegation. Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen extended special thanks to the Government of the Sultanate of Oman for taking good care of the Bangladesh Community in Oman during the COVID-19 pandemic. Undersecretary Sheikh Khalifa Alharthy appreciated the contribution of Bangladesh community to the economies of both countries.
While appreciating the generosity of Bangladesh for hosting 1.1 million forcefully displaced Rohingya people, he expressed Oman’s unflinching support on Rohingya issue. Both sides agreed to work closely to address the ongoing challenges that emanated from the COVID-19 pandemic. Both sides reviewed the whole gamut of bilateral cooperation. The agenda of the consultations focused on the ongoing political relations, economic cooperation, capacity building and training of Bangladeshi workforce, consular issues, and people-to-people contacts.
The two sides agreed upon new areas of cooperation which include maritime affairs, diplomatic academies, think-tanks and start-ups, desalinization, formation of Joint Business Council, and possibilities of investment in High Tech Park and EEZs of Bangladesh. They noted the huge potential for expanding economic partnership given the strong complementarities between the two economies. They agreed on the importance of health and food security in the coming days. Both sides exchanged views on regional and multilateral issues and enhance the close cooperation in the multilateral fora.
Bangladesh Corespondent – Anowarul Hoque Bhuiyan