Bangladesh PM: We are encouraged to witness Maldives’ development journey

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina addresses the Maldivian Parliament on December 23, 2021. (Sun Photo/Mohamed Hayyan)

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said on Thursday that Bangladesh was encouraged to witness Maldives successful journey from a least developed country (LDC) to a middle-income country. 

Hasina, who is on a two-day state visit to Maldives, made the remark in her address to the Maldivian Parliament on Thursday evening. 

In her address, Hasina noted that Bangladesh has achieved remarkable progress in the last decade. 

The country graduated from an LDC to a middle-income country last November. 

Hasina said that Bangladesh had registered an average GDP growth of 7 percent in the past few years, which had risen to 8.2 percent in 2019-2020, before it went down with the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Bangladesh has achieved remarkable progress in the last decade. The average GDP growth registered in the previous few years has been more than 7 percent, while in 2019-2020, just before the pandemic, our GDP growth rate was 8.2 percent. But unfortunately, because of this COVID, it has gone down. 

She said that Bangladesh had also made remarkable progress in socio-economic indicators including women empowerment, maternal and child health, life expectancy, population growth rate, sanitation, drinking water, primary education, and literacy. 

“Bangladesh is now a USD 411 billion economy and is ranked among the 34 largest economies of the world,” she said. 

Hasina noted that development brought its own challenges. She said that Bangladesh’s focus was on diversifying the economy and exploring new markets in order to cope with the situation the country will face after the withdrawal of the benefits it used to enjoy as a LDC. 

She said that continuing with the development journey, Bangladesh aimed to transform into a knowledge-based developed country by 2041. 

Hasina said that Bangladesh believes no country in the world can prosper in isolation.  

“The COVID-19 pandemic taught us that we are interdependent and have to share our experiences for the sake of a better, secure and prosperous world,” she said.  

Hasina said that she hoped to further consolidate the warm and friendly relations between Maldives and Bangladesh in the coming years. 

“Bangladesh is thriving with possibilities and potentials. I call upon both the government and private sector of Maldives to be our partner in the development journey in the next 50 years for mutual benefit,” she said.