Our countries have similar growth targets
It is wonderful to see the bilateral ties between Bangladesh and Vietnam go from strength to strength, with Vietnamese Ambassador Pham Viet Chien commenting that our relationship was excellent, and that there was great scope for cooperation between the two nations on the economic front.
Indeed, Bangladesh and the Asean nation of Vietnam have so much in common. Both are small agrarian nations that have been ravaged by war in living memory. Both nations have developed impressively in the post-war years. Both nations are now power-houses in the apparel industry. Most importantly though, our countries have similar growth targets.
In that respect, it is better for us to have Vietnam as a friend and partner, rather than see them as a competitor, because strong ties are a win-win. Both Bangladesh and Vietnam have their eyes set on becoming a developed nation in the foreseeable future -- Vietnam plans to achieve this goal by 2045 -- and helping each other out will get us there faster.
The areas of cooperation are may: Bilateral trade can be given a boost, by encouraging Vietnamese businesses to come to Bangladesh and vice versa. There is great scope for agricultural cooperation, particularly in cashew production, of which Vietnam is the number one hub in the world. Other areas to cooperate on include manpower training, cooperating on Covid-19, the Rohingya repatriation issue, and better diplomacy.
The road ahead for Bangladesh will not be easy one. In a rapidly globalizing world, we need all the allies in development we can get. It is good to know that Vietnam is by our side.