‘Across Asia, India is the biggest market for exports from Bangladesh,’ says India’s PM Narendra Modi

India-Bangladesh Image credit UNI

New Delhi/IBNS: India and Bangladesh will soon initiate talks on a comprehensive bilateral economic partnership agreement, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Tuesday (Sept 6) as both countries held talks to review and strengthen the relationship here.

PM Modi said, “Across Asia, India is the biggest market for exports from Bangladesh. To further expedite this progress, we will soon initiate discussions on a bilateral economic comprehensive partnership agreement.”

Modi further said Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s visit is happening at a time when India is observing ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’.

“ And I am sure that India-Bangladesh friendship will touch new heights in the next 25 years of Amrit Kaal.”

Last year, India and Bangladesh celebrated together the 50th anniversary of Bangladesh’s independence, the golden jubilee of our diplomatic relations, and the birth centenary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, PM Modi said. 

On December 6, 2021, the two countries also celebrated the first ‘Friendship Day’ together all over the world, he added.

Bilateral trade between India-Bangladesh is increasing rapidly, PM Narendra Modi said issuing a joint statement with Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina in Delhi.

He said, “Today, Bangladesh is India’s biggest development partner and our biggest trade partner in the region. There is a continuous improvement in people-to-people cooperation.

“We have decided to extend cooperation in the IT, Space and Nuclear sectors. Talks are also underway b/w India & Bangladesh on power transmission lines.”

We will also continue to cooperate on climate change and on preserving a common heritage like the Sundarbans, he added.

Taking a step further in bilateral cooperation, the two countries signed key documents on water sharing.

“Fifty-four rivers flow through the India-Bangladesh border & are linked to the livelihood of people in both countries. Today, we have signed an important agreement regarding water-sharing of Kushiyara River,” said PM Modi in a joint statement with Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina.

Ahead of her visit, Sheikh Hasina highlighted the urgent need for water-sharing agreements with India pertaining to all 54 rivers while highlighting the difficulties faced by her country in the absence of an agreement in the case of the Teesta river.

They also discussed Bangladesh’s flood situation, terrorism, and bilateral, regional, and international issues.

“We have extended our cooperation on flood mitigation. We have been sharing real-time data regarding floods with Bangladesh & have also discussed terrorism. It’s imperative, that we together face the forces that are adversarial to us,” PM Modi said.

In the joint address, Bangladesh PM Hasina stressed the outcome of the talks will benefit the people of both countries.

“Today PM Modi & I have just concluded another round of fruitful discussion, the outcome of which will bring benefits to the people of both countries. We had the meeting in a spirit of close friendship & cooperation,” she said.