US Presidential Envoy on Climate John Kerry has said displacement due to climate change would be a vital security issue for everybody, and international financial institutions could do more for the climate change issue.
During his recent meeting with Kerry, Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen discussed the global issue of climate change and the possible US-Bangladesh collaboration in this connection.
They agreed to work closely in the COP26 and other multilateral platforms in order to fulfil commitments under the Paris climate agreement and even go beyond Paris.
Dr Momen is currently visiting Washington DC on an official trip to reach out the new US administration to further enhance the bilateral relations and convey Bangladesh’s willingness to work closely with the new US administration. He is scheduled to return home on Sunday.
The Foreign Minister recollected the vital contributions of Kerry towards the Paris Agreement on Climate Change and welcomed the decision of the US to return to the Paris Agreement.
He described the various actions taken by the government of Bangladesh under the prudent leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on mitigation, adaptation and resilience.
Also read: Kerry invites Bangladesh to join US climate conference
Dr Momen also briefed John Kerry on all the current and future activities of the Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF) and the Global Centre on Adaptation (GCA) regional office in Dhaka.
Kerry recognised the extraordinary challenges faced by Bangladesh due to climate change and frequent natural disasters, said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Saturday.
Meeting with US Lawmakers
During his recent discussions with three US lawmakers, Dr Momen urged for US lawmakers’ intervention to put enough political pressure on Myanmar to create a conducive environment for the sustainable return of Rohingyas.
Also read: Hasina’s ‘Mujib Climate Prosperity Plan’ lauded globally
The three US lawmakers are Senator Edward J. Markey (Democratic, Massachusetts), Congressman Michael T. McCaul (Republican-Austin) and Congressman Jim McGovern (Democratic, Massachusetts’ 2nd Congressional District).
The Foreign Minister talked about the potentials of further accelerating political and economic ties between Bangladesh and the US.
Bangladesh wants to upgrade her relations with the US from partnership to a strategic level by sharing common goals and working closely with the US new administration, he added.
Also read: Climate Change: Kerry discusses possible Bangladesh-US collaboration
The Foreign Minister informed US lawmakers about the trajectory of economic growth and socio-economic development of Bangladesh and briefed how the Bangladesh government has tackled the Covid-19 pandemic and managed the ongoing vaccination programme effectively with the able guidance and direction of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
Also read: John Kerry chosen as Biden’s climate tsar
He noted with satisfaction the excellent bilateral cooperation between the two countries in tackling Covid-19 in the initial phase of the pandemic, through the US donation of high-quality ventilators and Bangladesh’s supply of 6.5 million PPEs.
US lawmakers appreciated Bangladesh for sheltering over one million Rohingyas and expressed concern on the tremendous pressure it has created on the government and the people of Bangladesh.
On trade and investment matters, the Foreign Minister welcomed US investment in Special Economic Zones and High-Tech Parks, highlighting the higher return of investment from Bangladesh by utilising two major resources efficiently and effectively, namely, young and hardworking manpower and plenty of water.
He said the geo-political importance as well as the good connectivity of Bangladesh in the South Asia region, which could serve as a launching pad for US companies to get access to the wider regional market.
The Foreign Minister, referring to the celebration of birth centenary of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the Golden Jubilee of the Independence of Bangladesh, invited US lawmakers to visit Bangladesh to see the remarkable socio-economic progress achieved under the visionary leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, and also the situation of the displaced Rohingyas.