Australian Foreign Affairs Minister Marise Payne will arrive in Dhaka today on a three-day official visit, to attend the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Blue Economy ministerial meeting, as well as meeting Bangladesh high-ups to address the Rohingya issue.
During the visit, Payne will travel to Cox’s Bazar -- where Australia has been a leading donor in providing humanitarian assistance for forcefully displaced Rohingya and host communities, a press release issued by the Australian High Commission said yesterday.
The Australian foreign minister’s discussions with Bangladesh government leaders will focus on countering violent extremism, growing trade and investment links, promoting the Australian education sector and addressing the Rohingya crisis, it added.
At the IORA Blue Economy Ministerial Conference, Payne -- who is also minister for women -- will highlight strategies for creating environmentally sustainable marine-based industries including fishing, aquaculture, tourism, shipping, oil and gas.
Payne will also announce establishment of the IORA Blue Carbon Hub, an Australian initiative located at the University of Western Australia in Perth, to promote the health of blue carbon ecosystems -- mangroves, tidal marshes and seagrasses -- to endorse coastal protection, food security and sustainable livelihoods.
This will be the first visit by an Australian foreign minister to Bangladesh since 1998, and first by a cabinet minister since 2006.