Help achieve SDGs
PM urges dev partners
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday said her government has its full confidence in the international community that they will continue to support Bangladesh's development drive as it will have to implement a new set of goals -SDGs, reports UNB. "The developed countries should come forward to support us in realising the targets of SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals). We've the full confidence in the international community that they will continue to support our development drive," she said. The Prime Minister was addressing the inaugural session of the two-day Bangladesh Development Forum 2015 at the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC). Later, the Prime Minister inaugurated a Development Fair there. Sheikh Hasina said the current government is working with specific plans and programmes to achieve the SDGs. "We're determined to ensure a broad-based development of our people by ensuring the effective use of resources." She said just a few weeks ago, the international community endorsed the SDGs while building on its success achieved in the MDG regime, and Bangladesh aims to realise the SDGs. "I hope this Forum will reflect on how to achieve the SDGs by providing the government with prudent and effective recommendations." Hasina stressed that in the face of climate change and other development challenges, the international community needs to revisit the current global trade system to remove the constraints to ensure that the trade is contributing as a means for poverty reduction and employment opportunities. She said Bangladesh is a country of limitless potentials as it has everything to emerge as a vibrant economy. "We're pursuing an inclusive growth strategy to become a middle-income country by 2021 and a developed one by 2041." "We'll be happy if we get support from our development partners in our development pursuit. Our joint efforts are keys towards making this beautiful world free from poverty and hunger," the Prime Minister told her audience. Hasina said Bangladesh has been successful in many areas of economic and social development despite various challenges and constraints. "The resilient people of this country are committed to ensuring Bangladesh a development miracle within near future." She said her government has been working to implement the Vision 2021 at the heart which is to transform Bangladesh into a middle-income country. "We've brought down poverty from 56.7 percent in 1991 to 24.4 percent today. We've been able to cut hardcore poverty significantly and now it stands at 7.9 percent. We've set a target to reduce poverty below 14 percent by 2021," Hasina added. Noting that implementation of the SDGs would require more resources, she said here the government underscores the importance of engagement of development partners and private sectors of both domestic and external in its development pursuits. Aiming to garner foreign direct investment (FDI), Hasina said, her government is currently working to establish 100 designated economic zones in different parts of the country. Citing that labour migration has significant implication on Bangladesh's socio-economic development, especially in terms of providing job opportunities to a growing young population, she said Bangladesh believes that developing and developed countries should work together to protect the interests and wellbeing of the migrant workers and set their minimum wages. Mentioning that Bangladesh is one to the most vulnerable countries that suffer and would continue to suffer from global warming and climate change, Hasina said, "Climate financing is yet to reach its full potentials despite some strong efforts at the international level." She said stringent conditions within the global climate financing mechanism are becoming major barriers to the use of climate fund according to the needs and priorities of the country. "We recommend a re-examine of the stringent conditions of the funds to allow the climate change vulnerable countries to take benefits of it." The Prime Minister also said regional, sub-regional and bilateral cooperation in the Asia-Pacific area are essential for balanced development and ensuring a win-win situation for all. She also mentioned that Bangladesh has taken a lead in building regional cooperation processes such as Saarc, Bimstec and BCIM-EC. The last BDF meeting was held in Dhaka on February 15-16 in 2010, which adopted 25 action plans in seven sectors. The government's 2021 Vision that eyes poverty reduction and implementation of the seventh Five-year Plan, including SDGs, will be the main focus of the meeting.
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