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Bangladesh will not support sanctions against Russia — Information Minister

October 27, 2014, 12:31 UTC+3 DHAKA
According to the minister, imposing sanctions without any talks or consultations is not a healthy step regarding politics and diplomacy
1 pages in this article
Dhaka, Bangladesh

Dhaka, Bangladesh

© AP Photo/A.M. Ahad

DHAKA, October 27. /TASS/. Bangladesh considers the international sanctions against Russia in connection with the situation in Ukraine a wrong step and won't support them, country’s Minister of Information Hasanul Haq Inu told TASS on Monday.

"We do not support the unreasonable sanctions imposed on Russia. Imposing sanctions omitting the process of talks and consultations is not a healthy step as far as politics and diplomacy are concerned, and Bangladesh can not support this," he stressed. 

Hasanul Haq Inu also touched upon the killings of several Russian journalists in the south-eastern Ukraine. "Nobody has the right to touch the representatives of the media, no matter how far the conflict goes", he said. "Killing of journalists in south-eastern Ukraine is a sad fact in the history of world democracy. Journalists must be protected, and we, from our part, must condemn attacks on representatives of the media."

Bangladesh to join BRICS Development Bank

Bangladesh has applied to join the Development Bank of the BRICS group of nations, involving Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, country’s Minister of Information said.

“We've already made a decision so it is up to the BRICS Nation to accept our membership,” the minister said.

“We think that the BRICS Bank will be more suitable for financing the development of our human resourses and infrastructure than the present financial institutions, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in particular,” Hasanul Haq Inu said in an interview to TASS.

“We believe that the BRICS nations should play a more significant role in the world political set up. So, BRICS need to become the part of the global management,” he added.

”In this regard, we fully support any effort by Vladimir Putin in this direction, and we oppose the policy of certain governments of the world of displacing unwanted regimes and making unilateral decisions,” the minister said.

The minister of information said his country was in favour of multi-polar global architecture and fair international economic system. “We definitely support the move by Vladimir Putin to reform the IMF with the proposal of accommodating new economies,” Hasanul Haq Inu said.

Bilateral projects with Russia

Bangladesh is ready to discuss Russia’s proposal to set up a bilateral intergovernmental commission to deal with strategic projects in different areas of bilateral cooperation, the minister said in an interview to TASS.

The government of Bangladesh “will definitely look at this commission to develop it so that Bangladesh and Russia can also set up an inter-governmental mechanism to evaluate the projects and the areas of investment and areas of economic activities,” he said.

He added it would be a correct move to set up a bilateral mechanism to monitor the implementation of economic agreements as well as to study possible spheres of partnership between the two states at the level of governments as well as entrepreneurs.

Russia-Bangladesh mutual trade

Russia and Bangladesh plan to boost mutual trade from $847 million to $1 billion over twelve months, Bangladeshi Information Minister said.

“We intend to raise mutual trade to $1 billion during a year. This is our basic task,” the minister said, adding that Bangladesh “is interested in the imports of fertilizers, rolled metal products and textile raw materials from Russia and the exports of frozen shrimp and leather articles to Russia.”

“Besides, Russia is currently importing ready-made clothing for wide use but not from Bangladesh. We can become a leading clothes supplier to Russia,” Hasanul Haq Inu said.

Russia’s investment in joint ventures in Bangladesh could “open a new page in bilateral trade and economic cooperation, the Bangladeshi minister said.

“Joint ventures could be set up in very diverse sectors. This applies to ready-made clothes, textiles and leather, civil ship-building, as well as the production of information and communications equipment for exports to third countries,” he said.

The Bangladeshi minister also invited Russia to take part in infrastructural projects in Bangladesh. ‘We’re open for the Russian projects for the construction of the subway and a monorail road, which we have mapped out, and also for the construction of the country’s first deep-water port,” he said.

“Russia can provide Bangladesh assistance in geological prospecting on the shelf of the Bay of Bengal. This is yet another area, in which we have no possibility so far to implement projects on our own,” the Bangladeshi minister said.

Speaking about Russia’s embargo on food imports from the United States and the EU counties in response to western sanctions against Moscow, the Bangladeshi minister said this embargo was “opening up new possibilities for Bangladesh’s exporters.”

“But we’re not viewing the Russian market through this prism. If our entrepreneurs gain access to the Russian market, we’ll be focused on it, irrespective of sanctions,” he said.

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