Italian minister looks at areas for deeper ties

Italian minister looks at areas for deeper ties

Bangladesh and Italy can cooperate in the areas of energy, infrastructure, transfer of technology, and heavy machinery for textiles for the benefit of both countries, a visiting Italian minister said yesterday.

Deputy Foreign Minister of Italy Benedetto Della Vedova appreciated Bangladesh's consistent growth rate at over 6 percent in the last six years. He met with State Minister for Foreign Affairs Md Shahriar Alam at the foreign ministry.

Italy imported products worth 904.2 million euros from Bangladesh during the January-October period of 2014, exceeding 865 million euros of the previous year, Vedova said in a statement.

Alam said the two countries have enjoyed excellent relations since Bangladesh's independence and newer avenues for trade and investment will emerge in the coming days.

Vedova extended the Italian prime minister's invitation to the prime minister of Bangladesh to the opening ceremony of Milan Expo 2015, scheduled for May 1.

He also hoped that the prime minister would be present at the Milan Expo on September 20, 2015 -- the day that would be celebrated as Bangladesh Day in Italy.

Vedova also paid a courtesy call on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Speaker of Parliament Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury, Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed and Expatriate Welfare and Overseas Employment Minister Khandker Mosharraf Hossain yesterday.

Italian Ambassador to Bangladesh Mario Palma and Head of Office of the Deputy Foreign Minister Lorenzo Galanti accompanied the deputy minister at the meetings.

Additional Foreign Secretary (bilateral) Mizanur Rahman and other senior officials of the foreign affairs ministry were also present at the meeting with the state minister.