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US ambassador Miller exposes endeavors for Dhaka-New York direct flight

US ambassador Miller exposes endeavors for Dhaka-New York direct flight

“I am working with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to reopen the Dhaka-New York direct flight,” he said while addressing a reception at the honour of visiting five New York state senators at the American Club in the capital on Friday night.

Biman Bangladesh Airlines used to operate flights on Dhaka-New York route till 2006. But, currently Biman or any other airlines from Bangladesh are not allowed to fly to the USA directly as the US’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has downgraded the Civil Aviation Authority, Bangladesh (CAAB) to Category-2.However, the CAAB has already taken necessary steps to fulfill USA’s FAA compliance and is waiting to welcome the US audit team here to get certificate as category 1.

Welcoming the visiting New York State Legislators here, Ambassador Miller laid emphasis on more educational and cultural exchanges between the two countries to “keep going on” the US-Bangladesh bilateral relations.

“let’s have some Bangladeshi parliamentarian to New York as well,” he suggested.

Five New York City State Senators, who provide strong support and cooperation to the Bangladeshi diasporas in New York in various matters, are on a week-long visit here to observe the massive development in Bangladesh.

Led by Senator Luis Sepulveda, the delegation, comprising four other State Senators – Leroy Comrie, James Skoufis, Kevin S Parker and John C Liu – and three staff members, held meetings with high level dignitaries here as well as visited Sylhet and Rohingya camps in Cox’s Bazar.

Centre for NRB Foundation hosted the reception with support of the Bangladesh foreign affairs ministry.In their short comments, all the senators said the visit opened their eyes as they admitted to explore huge business opportunities for entrepreneurs of the USA and Bangladesh.

“After going back to New York, we will encourage our state and federal representatives to make sure to open up channels so this country (Bangladesh) and our state (New York) got benefit from business and relationship,” said Senator Luis who got second largest community from Bangladeshi origins at his constituency in the Bronx of New York.

He observed that the Dhaka-New York direct flight needs to be reopened for making the business opportunity maximum between the two countries.

The Senator also said they would meet with vice chancellors of the City University of New York (CUNY) and the State University of New York (SUNY) after going back to establish an educational exchange programs with Bangladeshi universities.

“This is the first year we came here …. Hopefully next year or two years from now we will bring 10 legislators from New York here,” he added.

Noting that he is working with New York Bangladeshi community in last 30 years, Senator Kevin said Bangladesh is a powerful country with extremely passionate and entrepreneurial spirited people. “I look forward to working with the Bangladesh community to explore more business opportunities,” he added.

All the Senators lauded Bangladesh role in providing humanitarian support and shelter to forcibly displaced 1.1 Rohingya here.

Director General (America) of foreign ministry Ferdousi Shahriar, Centre for NRB Foundation President M E Chowdhury Shameem and CEO Dilara Afroz Khan Rupa also spoke on the occasion.