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Australia keen to boost political, economic ties with Bangladesh

Australian Assistant Minister for Foreign Affairs Tim Watts has said Bangladesh and Australia work closely together to promote their shared interests in regional peace and security, and have a growing trade and investment relationship.

“I look forward to continuing discussions on our political and economic cooperation while in Bangladesh,” he said.

The Australian assistant minister is representing Australia at the 6th Indian Ocean Conference in Bangladesh, said the Australian High Commission in Dhaka.

The conference is the flagship forum for key partners in the Indian Ocean region to discuss regional cooperation, growth, and security.
This year’s conference theme is “Peace, Prosperity and Partnership for a Resilient Future.”

This week, Watts will also travel to Bhutan, Nepal and India to strengthen the bilateral cooperation, discuss their shared strategic interests and further Australia’s trade and investment ties.

“It is also a key opportunity to build on our strong people-to-people links between each of our countries,” he said.
In Bhutan, Watts will meet with government, community and religious leaders, building on their warm connection and the visit of Bhutan’s Foreign Minister Tandi Dorji to Australia last year.

Australia and Bhutan’s diplomatic relations were established 20 years ago, formalising the longstanding friendship between our two countries.

Travelling onwards to Kathmandu, Watts will discuss opportunities to advance Australia’s strong education and people-to-people ties with Nepal, the country’s third largest international student market.

In India, he looks forward to formally opening Australia’s Consulate-General in Kolkata, which is the commercial hub and cultural capital of eastern India.

The Consulate-General will continue to grow Australia’s trade, investment and education interests in this region.