Cox's Bazar, Sept 20 (UNB) - UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and its partner Bangladesh Red Crescent Society (BDRCS) have distributed over 10,000 family kits among poor families of the host community of the district.
The kit distributions were carried out in Moheshkali (3500 kits), Kutubdia (1,500 kits), and Chakaria (5,115 kits) on Thursday.
Local government officials were present at the handover ceremonies in each respective sub-district.
The distributions are among a good number of programmes being taken to assist some of the poorest local host communities that have generously hosted Rohingya refugees and have been impacted by the refugee influx, said UNHCR.
Altogether 30,000 households received the family kits, which include two floor mats, a bucket, tarpaulin, rope and wire.
Other UNHCR support to Bangladeshi host communities includes programmes to assist with livelihoods, the distribution of energy-efficient LPG cooking stoves, the rehabilitation of schools, improvements to roads and drainage, as well as the installation of solar lighting.
Dhaka, Sept 19 (UNB) - Bangladesh Ambassador to South Korea Abida Islam on Wednesday sought increased Korean investments including from the Non-Resident Bangladeshis (NRBs) to achieve the targets outlined in Vision-2021 and 2041.
She conveyed thanks to the Korean government for its continued support in the development activities of Bangladesh.
The Ambassador was addressing the first ever “Bangladesh Development Fair” in the Gyeonggi Techno Park of Ansan City of Korea organized by the Embassy of Bangladesh in Seoul, in association with Ansan City Government.
A good number of Korean business community members along with Bangladeshi workers, students and Bangladeshi businessmen residing in Korea were present at the event, said the Embassy.
Vice Mayor of Ansan City Government Jin-Soo Lee also attended the event.
The fair started with a parade, which was like “Mongol Shobha Jatra” and was decorated with colorful dresses, masks, national flag and green-red hats which drew huge attraction among the guests.
All the attendees including the Vice Mayor spontaneously participated in the procession. The main program started with playing of the national anthems of Bangladesh and the Republic of Korea.
Ambassador Abida gave a brief description of the present government’s initiatives for the socio-economic development of Bangladesh.
Jin-Soo Lee lauded the achievements of Bangladesh in the socio-economic sectors and said both the countries could have a promising future if they combine the technology of Korea with the human resources of Bangladesh.
He assured of his government’s support in all endeavors of Bangladesh and expressed his desire to visit the country soon.
A documentary on the Bangladesh’s development process was screened in the fair.
Dhaka, Sep 19 (UNB) - Robert Douglas Simpson has joined as the new Representative of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Bangladesh.
Simpson, a US citizen, has been working on the forest governance with the Forestry Department of FAO Headquarters since 2009, said a UN FAO press release on Wednesday.
Graduated from the University of Minnesota with specialization in international relations and economics Simpson has more than 20 years of working experiences in various countries including US, Madagaskar and Liberia.
Before joining FAO, he worked for the United States Embassy in Antananarivo, Madagascar and later for conservation and forest management, primarily with the Malagasy Government in several of its regional offices.
Robert has also worked for the United States Forest Service as the Liberia Forest Initiative Program Coordinator to support the Liberian Government forest sector reform process following the UN Security Council-imposed sanctions.
His immediate last assignment was as the Manager of the FAO-EU Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) Programme, FAO Headquarters in Italy. He is married and father of a daughter.
Dhaka, Sept 19 (UNB) - The European Commission and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy on Wednesday adopted a joint communication that sets out the EU's vision for a new and comprehensive strategy to better connect Europe and Asia.
The joint communication builds on the European Union's own experience of enhancing connections between its member states, with and in other regions.
With sustainable, comprehensive and rules-based connectivity at its core, the communication will help to guide the EU's external action in this field and is a part of the implementation of its Global Strategy, said the EU in a statement.
“Connectivity is the way to the future. The more connected we are, the more opportunities we have – to find common political solutions and to bring economic prosperity to citizens,” said High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini.
“Our approach is the European Union's way: to establish stronger networks and strengthen partnerships for sustainable connectivity, across all sectors and based on a respect for common rules. This is the European way to tackle challenges and take opportunities, to the benefit of people in Europe and in Asia as well.”
Vice-President for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness Jyrki Katainen said they want to work with their Asian partners to improve connections between Europe and Asia, while bringing our values and approach in doing so.
Infrastructure networks that will be built should be coherent, interoperable, as well as financially and environmentally sustainable. Calls for tender should be open and transparent to promote good governance and a level playing field. It is an approach that works, and one that we see a demand for among Asian countries, in our Eastern neighbourhood, the Western Balkans and beyond."
The Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development Neven Mimica said the EU and Asia are important partners on sustainable development and delivering the UN 2030 Agenda.
“Our development cooperation is an essential element of our broader engagement and partnership with Asia, not least in promoting sustainable connectivity. We want to further strengthen our partnership and focus even more on providing technical assistance, improving regulatory environments and creating incentives to drive forward and scale-up much needed investments."
Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc said transport infrastructure is the lifeblood of EU-Asia connections, carrying both people and goods between the continents, on the wings of digitalisation and decarbonisation.
“Europe is sharing and engaging through one of the most developed transport networks and infrastructure financing programmes in the world: the trans-European transport network. Connectivity matters!”
The EU will combine a principled approach to connectivity and recognition that Asia encompasses different regions, which are home to very diverse countries in terms of economic models and level of development, with concrete action based on three strands.
These are creating transport links, energy and digital networks and human connections; offering connectivity partnerships to countries in Asia and organisations and promoting sustainable finance through utilising diverse financial tools.
With Asia requiring an estimated €1.3 trillion per year for infrastructure investment, there are significant opportunities for EU companies, provided that robust legal frameworks are in place.
The EU will look to combine financial sources from international financial institutions, multilateral development banks and the private sector to ensure sustainable domestic and international finance for connectivity, while ensuring transparency and a level playing field for businesses.
Dhaka, Sept 19 (UNB) - Foreign Secretary M Shahidul Haque will continue for another year as senior secretary of the government under a contractual appointment with effect from December 31 this year or the date of his fresh joining.
The Ministry of Public Administration issued a gazette notification in this regard on Wednesday.
In July this year, Haque was promoted to senior secretary of the government. He was supposed to go on retirement on December 30 this year.
He has been serving as Foreign Secretary (Senior Secretary) of the government of Bangladesh since January 10, 2013. He was the chair of the 9th Global Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD).
Haque is serving as an independent expert to the UN Committee on the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of their Families (CMW) for the term 2014-2017 and has recently been reelected for another 4-year term (2018-2021) securing the highest number of votes.
He is also a member of the Migration Advisory Board of International Organization for Migration (IOM).
Haque has been actively promoting human rights of migrants and pro-actively working with NGOs and civil society to advocate rights of migrant workers.
He obtained an MA (IR) from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy in USA (1988) and stood first class first, both in Masters and Honours, in Social Welfare from Dhaka University.
He was also awarded the Dhaka University Chancellor’s Award, the Grants Commission Award and the Chancellor’s Gold Medal for his outstanding academic accomplishment.