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Dhaka Tribune

Salman: No dialogue with BNP on caretaker govt

He said the UK wants a free, fair and neutral election and the government has strengthened the Election Commission to that end

Update : 05 Jul 2023, 06:13 PM

Prime Minister's Private Industry and Investment Adviser Salman F Rahman on Wednesday said there would be no dialogue with BNP on the caretaker government system which has been abolished by the court.

“The election will be held as per the constitution. Dialogue will be held if BNP takes part in the next election accepting the demand (accepting constitutional provision). There will be no dialogue with the BNP on caretaker government issue,” he said.

The adviser made the remarks after his meeting with visiting British Minister for International Trade Nigel Huddleston at Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA) office in the city.

He said the UK wants a free, fair and neutral election and the government has strengthened the Election Commission to that end.

“The government is committed to a free and fair election. Our Election Commission is independent. The proof is that many city corporation elections are being held neutrally. National elections will be held as per the constitution,” said the adviser.

He said the opposition should understand that there is no alternative other than participating in the election.


Also Read: UK minister for int'l trade visits Bangladesh to strengthen ties


Salman said they also discussed the Rohingya issue and sought continued focus and pressure on Myanmar to resolve the crisis.

They discussed the Aviation Trade and Investment Partnership, signed by the UK and Bangladesh in May 2023, to strengthen Bangladesh's aviation sector and create jobs in both countries.

The UK minister is here to discuss relevant issues with Bangladesh to help grow green growth.

He wants to use his first official visit here to demonstrate the UK's eagerness to work with Bangladesh on shared challenges like climate change, using their collective expertise to deepen trading relationships, spark economic growth, and create jobs.

"I look forward to working with the Government of Bangladesh on increasing mutual prosperity by addressing barriers to market access and trade,” said the UK minister.

There are huge opportunities for British companies to take advantage of the growing trade relationship between the UK and Bangladesh, according to the UK government. With Bangladesh, UK's trade has reached nearly £5 billion.

Huddleston arrived in Dhaka on Tuesday evening on a two-day official visit. His visit is focused on unlocking more opportunities for British companies to grow trade.

In Dhaka, the minister will visit Intertek, a UK company supporting supply chains in Bangladesh by providing bespoke testing services, for example ensuring manufacturers meet product safety standards.

This visit comes a month after the UK's world-leading Developing Countries Trading Scheme (DCTS) came into force making it easier for Bangladesh and other developing countries to trade with the UK.

Bangladeshi exporters now benefit from simpler and more generous Rules of Origin, which means that they will be able to produce goods using components from many more countries and still export these with zero tariffs to the UK.

Huddleston will also meet Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi to discuss the UK's world-leading Developing Countries Trading Scheme (DCTS), which came into force last month, and makes it easier for Bangladesh to trade with the UK.

Following the joint communique on Aviation Trade and Investment Partnership, Minister Huddleston will meet Mahbub Ali, state minister for civil aviation and tourism.

Discussions will focus on the UK's offer to help Bangladesh realise its ambition of becoming the next aviation hub in South Asia.

"Our trade with Bangladesh has grown significantly over the past year, which shows our partnerships are reaching new heights," he said.

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