Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is to leave Dhaka for Qatar March 4 to attend the LDC5 Summit, which appears to be Dhaka’s last participation as a member state of the grouping of poorer economies as Bangladesh is set to graduate out of the forum by 2026.
A foreign ministry spokesperson said the premier was expected to seek global supports for smooth and transition of Bangladesh’s LDC graduation during her participation in the summit to be held on March 5-9 in Doha.
Foreign ministry’s public diplomacy wing director general Seheli Sabrin said Sheikh Hasina was expected as well to seek developed countries to continue trade privileges beyond 2026 that Bangladesh now enjoys as a LDC in view of global recession and COVID-19 impact.
The spokesperson said the Bangladesh premier would point out that the LDC and developing nations were worst victims of the pandemic while the Russia-Ukraine war rattled their economies more than that of the developed countries.
She said the premier would explain how the pandemic and the war slowed down the economic growth and created challenges for poorer and developing countries to achieve Sustainable Development Goals.
Sabrin said Sheikh Hasina would call on Qatar Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani and Prime Minister Khalid bin Khalifa bin Abdulaziz Al Thani on the summit sidelines.
“She (Sheikh Hasina) is likely to seek Qatar’s support in the areas of fuel oil, as energy prices have shot up due to the Russia-Ukraine war,” the spokesperson said.
The premier is also set to meet UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres during the Summit.
The Prime Minister will spend very busy time during the visit as in the morning of March 5 she is set to deliver her speech as a ‘special guest speaker’ at the ‘Opening Plenary Meeting’ of the summit, Seheli said.
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) president Csaba Korosi and Malawi President and the current Chairperson of Least Developed Countries (LDCs)DR. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera are also scheduled to address the session.
Same day in the afternoon, the Prime Minister will address the side event titled “Sustainable and Smooth Transition for the Graduating Cohort of 2021” organized by the three Asian countries- Bangladesh, Nepal and Lao PDR- are on the way to transition from the list of LDC.
On the morning of March 6, she will deliver a speech as the chief guest at the business summit titled “The Rise of Bengal Tiger: Potentials of Trade & Investment in Bangladesh”, jointly organized by Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC) and Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA).
Same day in the afternoon, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will attend a side event arranged by Bangladesh titled “Investment in Research and Development in LDCs for Smart and Innovative Societies” as the chief guest.
Egypt, Singapore, and Estonia’s ministerial level representatives will attend the side event, while high level officials of several international organizations including WTO, UN Tech Bank for LDCs and OECD are also scheduled to join the ocasion.
In the evening of the same day, the Prime Minister will attend the ‘Regional Envoys Conference’ organized with Bangladesh ambassadors stationed in GCC countries consisting Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey.
On March 7 morning, Sheikh Hasina will attend a high level roundtable titled “Enhancing the participation of Least Developed Countries (LDCs) in International Trade & Regional Integration” as a co-chair.
Same day in the afternoon, the Prime Minister will join a side event as the chief guest titled “Global Partnership for Smooth and Sustainable Graduation: Marching towards Smart Bangladesh” organized by Bangladesh.
The Minister of Denmark, UNCTAD- General Secretary and high officials of different international organizations including WTO, UNIDO, and OECD will also attend the side event.
On the same day evening, the primer will join the event organized by the Bangladesh expatriates and community living in Qatar as the chief guest.
The prime minister is expected to leave Qatar for home on March 8.