Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen has invited the World Bank (WB) to invest further in climate-smart infrastructures, especially for widening and heightening embankments along Bangladesh’s coastal belt.
He made the request while meeting WB Vice-President for South Asia Region Martin Raiser at the Foreign Ministry in Dhaka on Thursday.
The foreign minister also shared his ideas about coastal forestation and renewable energy generation based on such coastal embankments, reports UNB.
The World Bank Vice-President responded positively to Momen’s suggestion to explore a possible partnership with the Global Hub for Locally-Led Adaptation, recently launched under the aegis of the Global Centre on Adaptation (GCA)’s regional office based in Dhaka.
He noted that 35 per cent of the Bank’s current International Development Association contribution to Bangladesh maintains a focus on enhancing the country’s resilience to climate change impacts.
Raiser appreciated Bangladesh’s achievements in sustainable development and reaffirmed the Bank’s readiness to support the country to make the next transition in its development journey.
In reply, the foreign minister suggested that the World Bank can showcase Bangladesh’s socio-economic development as an international success story to mark the 50th anniversary of Bangladesh’s partnership with the Bank.
Raiser acknowledged the generosity of the government and people of Bangladesh in hosting the forcibly displaced Rohingya from Myanmar.
He reiterated the Bank’s interest in supporting improved living conditions and education of the Rohingya population pending their safe and dignified return to Myanmar.
Momen briefed him about the arrangements by the government in Bhashan Char for the relocated Rohingyas, and suggested that the Bank look into possibilities for its engagements in the island.
The foreign minister urged the World Bank to continue to work towards supporting the national efforts at poverty alleviation, with a focus on reducing extreme poverty.
He suggested further scaling up the World Bank’s work on human resource development, while the World Bank Vice-President referred to the Bank’s signature contribution to primary and pre-school education in Bangladesh.
The World Bank vice president expressed particular interest in supporting the integration of vocational training as part of formal education.
Momen underscored the need for the international community’s support towards making Bangladesh’s LDC graduation smooth and sustainable.
The World Bank Country Director for Bangladesh Abdoulaye Seck was also present at the meeting.