India and Bangladesh strengthen defense ties

Published On: June 24, 2024 09:54 PM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, June 24: A defense agreement has been signed between India and Bangladesh to exchange cooperation in the sectors of maritime security, ocean, economy, space and telecommunications.

The agreement was signed during Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina’s visit to India. According to the Indian media, with this agreement, India and Bangladesh have come closer in terms of defense ties, according to media reports. However, the details of the agreement have not  yet been made public.

Bangladesh’s PM Hasina has been on a visit to India since Saturday. This is the first visit to India by a foreign head of government after Narendra Modi assumed the post of the PM for a third term. PM Hasina had also participated in Modi’s swearing-in ceremony two weeks ago.

During her discussion with journalists in New Delhi, PM Hasina said that India and Bangladesh have decided to enhance cooperation in the distribution of river water, electricity and the energy sector. She also invited Indian industrialists to enhance investment in Bangladesh.

In the past eight years, India has provided loan assistance to Bangladesh worth about USD 8 billion. As Bangladesh prepares to further develop waterways, rail, and road connectivity, this visit by PM Hasina to India and the agreement made during the visit have been observed as significant.

Since PM Hasina’s Awami League rose to power in 2009, the relations between India and Bangladesh have been amicable and harmonious. However, many other issues such as the distribution of water of the Tista River, illegal immigration are yet to be resolved. Likewise, the commercial and political relations of both countries are harmonious.

Bangladesh has also maintained a good relationship with China, which is a major trading partner of Bangladesh. China imports textile raw materials from Bangladesh. Textile industry of Bangladesh is famous all over the world. They earn about 80 percent of the total foreign currency from garments. Bangladesh has also maintained diplomatic and commercial relations with the USA as well.

Bangladesh is included in the Indo-Pacific strategy launched by India to compete with China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Experts in the diplomatic field say that the strategy launched by India with the slogan of 'neighborhood first’ is inspired by the aim of promoting regional cooperation and stopping China’s dominance in the region.  


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