India largest market in Asia for Bangladeshi exports: Modi
Bangladesh and India will soon start negotiating on a bilateral comprehensive economic partnership agreement, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced today (September 6, 2022).
"Today, India is the largest market in Asia for Bangladesh's exports. To further accelerate this growth, we will soon start discussions on the bilateral Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement," Modi told reporters after talks with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at Hyderabad House in New Delhi.
The Indian PM also said that Bangladesh is India's largest development partner and their largest trade partner in the region.
Modi also spoke on the water-sharing issue between the two nations and said there are 54 rivers that pass through the India-Bangladesh border and they "have been linked to the livelihood of the people of the two countries for centuries. These rivers, their folk tales and folk songs, have also been witness to our shared cultural heritage," reports our New Delhi correspondent.
"Today, we have signed an important agreement on sharing water of the Kushiyara river. This will benefit Southern Assam in India and Sylhet region in Bangladesh," Modi said.
Modi said he and Hasina had a "fruitful conversation" on enhancing cooperation in relation to flood mitigation.
Rising energy prices are now posing a challenge to all developing countries and the unveiling of the first unit of Maitree thermal power plant in Rampal today will increase the availability of affordable electricity in Bangladesh, Indian PM Modi added.
"Fruitful talks are also underway between the two countries on connecting power transmission lines," he said.
According to Modi, the inauguration of the railway bridge over Rupsha river "is a remarkable step" towards enhancing connectivity.
Addressing joint press meet with Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina. https://t.co/6bnJ1zjwVF
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) September 6, 2022
This bridge is an important part of the new railway line being built between Khulna and Mongla port under India's Line of Credit. India will continue to extend all support for the development and expansion of Bangladesh's railway system, the Indian PM said.
He said the two countries also decided to increase cooperation in sectors like IT, space and nuclear energy, which are of interest to the younger generations in the two countries.
"We will also continue to cooperate on climate change issues and on preserving our common heritage like the Sundarbans," according to Modi.
He said Bangladesh has made remarkable progress under the leadership of Hasina.