Mexico City, 30 September 2021
State Minister for Foreign Affairs Md. Shahriar Alam MP delivered a lecture on the history and socio-economic development of Bangladesh at an event titled “Meeting the young minds”; organized by the Embassy of Bangladesh in Mexico City in partnership with the Ibero-American University of the city. His deliberation was live streamed by the University authority and approximately 2700 students of “IBERO” campuses from three different cities of Mexico namely at Torreon, Tijuana, and Santa Fe, were connected to this event virtually.
At the outset, the State Minister congratulated the students on the 200-year celebration of Mexican independence and mentioned that a military contingent and a cultural team of Bangladesh joined the 200-year celebration of Mexican independence, while a military delegation from Mexico is expected to participate in the victory day celebration of Bangladesh. He also congratulated the students for pursuing higher studies in this prestigious university.
In order to provide them a brief account on the history of Bangladesh, he elaborated on the partition of the subcontinent in 1947, Bangladesh’s fight against oppression followed by the partition and its long struggle towards independence under the undisputed and charismatic leadership of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. In this connection, he provided a detailed account with regards to the language movement and the Mother Language Day on 21st February which was later recognized by UNESCO as the International Mother Language Day in 1999.
Stating that Bangladesh has already emerged as an economic powerhouse in Asia during the last decade under the visionary leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, State Minister Shahriar Alam shared Bangladesh’s impressive journey towards prosperity. He also underlined that Bangladesh, at present, is recognized by the international community as a “development miracle” for its remarkable success in poverty reduction, food security, women empowerment, and inclusive economic growth.
Referring to the stable economic growth rate over 6% during the past decade and official announcement of its graduation the LDC status to a developing country in the coming years, Bangladesh State Minister then discussed the impact of Covid-19 pandemic on the economy of Bangladesh and its resilience against it including the status of procurement and distribution of vaccines by the Government of Bangladesh. In this connection he mentioned that Bangladesh has inoculated 6.1 million people on a single day (on 28th September 2021) to celebrate the birthday of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
State Minister Shahriar Alam expressed his deep appreciation to Mexico for extending its consistent support on the Rohingya issue at the multilateral platforms. He highlighted Bangladesh’s contribution to global peace as one of the leading troop contributing countries. Bangladesh’s challenges to address the adverse impacts of climate change as well as migration were duly highlighted during his lecture as well as the receipt of the ‘SDG Progress Award’ by the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in recognition of Bangladesh’s initiatives to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure peace and prosperity for all.
With regards to the bilateral relationship with Mexico, State Minister Shahriar Alam said that Bangladesh considers Mexico as a good friend and a trusted partner in the region with whom it shares similar values of multiculturalism, democracy and peaceful coexistence. He called upon the university authority to explore possibilities of future academic cooperation with its counterparts in Bangladesh.
He also mentioned that Bangladesh is one of the major cricket-playing countries in the world that has a passion for Latin American football. This could be an area for future bilateral cooperation, he added.
After his deliberation, Bangladesh State Minister responded to the queries of the students on issues related to migration management, water management, cryptocurrency, and his experience in Mexico including the Mexican food. In response of student’s query about water management related flood control in Bangladesh, he elaborated the measures taken by the Government to address flood situation, including adoption of early warning mechanism, afforestation, establishment of cyclone centers and barrages. On the question of cryptocurrency, Bangladesh State Minister explained that Bangladesh is still in the process digitalization and thus yet to have any mechanism on the control of cryptocurrency and its implications. In response of the query on migration management, he elaborated the contribution of migrants to Bangladesh economy specially during COVID-19 pandemic, and underscored that Bangladesh has so far well managed the migration flow.
He also invited the students to visit and enjoy the touristic attractions of Bangladesh especially the scenic beauty of the largest unbroken sea beach in Cox’s Bazar and the biggest mangrove forest in Sundarbans.
In conclusion of the session, he was awarded a ‘Certificate of Recognition’ for his excellent deliberation by the University authority. Ambassador Abida Islam, members of Bangladesh delegation and officials of the Embassy accompanied State Minister Shahriar Alam in the above event.
At the evening, he attended a dinner arranged in his honor and the visiting Bangladesh Delegation at Bangladesh Embassy in Mexico City, where high officials from the Mexican Foreign Office, politicians and local dignitaries were present.