• Wednesday, Nov 14, 2018
  • Last Update : 08:39 am

Bangladesh urges Sri Lanka to implement free trade deal

  • Published at 12:35 am August 28th, 2018
Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal
Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal Mahmood Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal made the call at a meeting held with Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on the eve of the two-day Indian Ocean Conference 2018 in Hanoi

The Bangladesh government yesterday urged Sri Lanka to implement a free trade agreement (FTA) designed to enhance bilateral trade between the two countries.

Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal made the call at a meeting held with Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on the eve of the two-day Indian Ocean Conference 2018 in Hanoi, Vietnam, reports UNB.

“It is possible to multiply the two-way trade volume by making the FTA an effective one,” Mustafa Kamal said, noting that the current bilateral trade volume between Bangladesh and Sri Lanka is $150 million.

The planning minister recalled Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena's visit to Bangladesh in 2017 and emphasised the quick implementation of agreements and Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) signed between the two countries during his visit.

“If the MoU over shipping collaboration is implemented, Bangladesh can enhance its export by expanding business to western markets using Colombo Port, benefiting Sri Lanka as well,” AHM Mustafa Kamal said.

At the meeting, the Sri Lankan Prime Minister gave assurances that his government will be “sincere in the implementation of FTA and MoU on shipping collaboration”.

To emphasize the spirit of cooperation, Ranil Wickremesinghe said a number of Sri Lankan nationals are working in the production and service sectors of Bangladesh.