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Bangladesh seeks effective support from European Union for repatriation of Rohingyas

  • Published at 11:18 am September 25th, 2021
Dr Momen held a bilateral meeting with Josep Borrell
Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen with Josep Borrel, the high representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, during their bilateral meeting recently held in New York, US Courtesy

Issues of 100 billion annual climate fund and duty-free market access to Bangladeshi products, were also discussed 

Bangladesh has sought effective measures by the European Union for creating a conducive environment in Myanmar for sustainable repatriation of the Rohingyas sheltered in Bangladesh. 

Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen raised the issue and explained that Bangladesh is facing enormous social, economic and environmental costs by sheltering over 1.1 million Rohingyas.

Momen held a bilateral meeting with Josep Borrell, the high representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and vice-president of the European Commission, on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York recently. 

Borell thanked Bangladesh for the humanitarian gesture to the Rohingyas and assured that the EU would work with Bangladesh and the international community to ensure sustainable repatriation of the Rohingyas.

The issue of climate change was discussed in the bilateral meeting. 

Foreign Minister Momen also briefed Borell about the role of Bangladesh as the president of the Climate Vulnerable Forum, said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Saturday. 

He raised the issue of the $100 billion annual climate fund pledged by the developed countries and requested the EU to fulfil the commitment.

Momen stressed the importance of the allocation of 50% of the climate financing for adaptation measures. 

He explained the importance of loss and damage incurred because of river erosion, intrusion of salinity, sea-level rise, floods and droughts.

Also Read - Momen: Rohingya issue not sidelined by Afghan crisis

The foreign minister emphasised sharing of responsibility for the climate migrants – the people uprooted from their homes and traditional jobs because of the impacts of climate change. 

He also explained the need of creating high and wide embankments in the coastal belt, and in the areas prone to river erosion. He invited public funding and private sector investment from the EU in developing the embankments, with roads, solar panels and windmills on those. 

Josep Borell remarked that significant efforts would be needed to contain the temperature rise to the maximum limit of 1.5 degrees Celsius. 

He was of the view that there would be social and economic shocks in the effort of addressing the challenges of climate change. 

The foreign minister agreed with him and sought technology transfer for coping with the mitigation targets.

Momen raised the issue of trade with the EU and thanked him for providing duty-free market access to Bangladeshi products under the EBA scheme of the EU. 

He also thanked Borell for continued market access to Bangladesh till 2029 and requested for providing GSP+ facilities once the EBA facilities to Bangladesh will be over in 2029. 

Borell assured the minister that he would convey the request with a positive recommendation to the concerned authorities of the EU. 

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