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FM for joint efforts to bolster ties with Australia

DHAKA, Aug 23, 2016 (BSS) - Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali today stressed the need for joint efforts for further strengthening and widening the avenues of cooperation between Bangladesh and Australia.

"The avenues of cooperation which have opened up between Bangladesh and Australia in recent times would be further strengthened and widened in the days ahead," he hoped.

The minister was talking to newly appointed Australian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Julia Niblett who called on him at his office, foreign ministry sources said.

During the meeting, Ali requested the envoy to explore the possibilities of producing qualified professionals who could work in the industrial and service sectors of both the countries.

He also highlighted contributions of Bangladesh diaspora in the development of both Australia and Bangladesh.

Referring to the invaluable contribution made by Australia during the country's War of Liberation in 1971, he hoped that the ties between the two countries would be brought back to the same level that was experienced during 1971-1975 period.

The foreign minister recalled that Australia was the first Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) country to have recognized Bangladesh on January 31, 1972.

The high commissioner reciprocated the sentiment saying that despite the physical distance, the relations between the two countries and the two peoples have been very strong and close since then.

She apprised the foreign minister of the ongoing and upcoming projects which once completed would elevate the cooperation between the two countries to a newer height.

In particular, she noted her government's interest in providing vocational training to the people of Bangladesh and assist in creating a pool of certified technical support personnel for the global markets.

Giving a brief on the security measures taken by the government in the aftermath of the July 1 incident, Mahmood Ali expressed the hope that the Australian Cricket Team would visit Bangladesh soon and cooperation in the field of sports would continue.

Earlier, the envoy met Foreign Secretary Md. Shahidul Haque at the latter's office here.

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