Dhaka and Paris today signed two instruments regarding Bangabandhu-2 Satellite and improvement of urban infrastructure in Bangladesh.
The instruments were signed and exchanged in presence of Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and French President Emmanuel Macron at the Karobi Hall at the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) here.
The instruments are – Credit Facility Agreement between Economic Relations Division (ERD), Bangladesh and the France Development Agency (AFD), France on “Improving Urban Governance and Infrastructure Program” and Letter of Intent (LOI) on Cooperation between Bangladesh Satellite Company Limited (BSCL) and Airbus Defence and Space SAS, France related to Bangabandhu-2 Earth Observation Satellite System.
The first instrument was signed by ERD Secretary Sharifa Khan and Agence Française de Développement (AFD) Country Director Benoît Chassatte as the second instrument was signed by BSCL Chairman Dr Shahjahan Mahmood and Stephane Vesval, Senior Vice President Sales and Marketing, Space Systems, Airbus.
The country’s first geostationary communications and broadcasting satellite, Bangabandhu Satellite-1, was manufactured by French company Thales Alenia Space and launched on May 12, 2018.
Earlier, a bilateral meeting between Sheikh Hasina and Emmanuel Macron was held at the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) in the capital after having a Tete-a-Tete.
Before that, on his arrival at the PMO, Macron was received by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina with a bouquet of flowers.
They also took part in a photo session before the bilateral meeting.
Later, they held a joint press briefing.
Before leaving the PMO, Macron signed the visitor’s book kept there.
Earlier in the morning, he paid glowing homage to Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman by placing a wreath at Bangabandhu’s portrait and then visited the Bangabandhu Memorial Museum at Dhanmondi-32 in the capital.
This is Macron’s first visit to Bangladesh and second visit of any French president as former President Mitterrand visited Bangladesh on February 20-24 in 1990.
The bilateral trade relationship has gone a long way since early 1990.
The total trade between Bangladesh and France soared from €210M to €4.9 billion today with France being the 5th country for exports.
French companies are now involved in various sectors including engineering, energy, aerospace and water sectors.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina visited France in November, 2021 at the invitation of French President Emmanuel Macron.
Macron arrived in Dhaka on Sunday evening on a two-day official visit to Bangladesh after attending the G-20 Summit in New Delhi, India.
A red carpet was rolled out and national anthems of both the countries were played as Macron was received by the prime minister with a flower bouquet at the airport at 8.10 pm on Sunday.
A guard of honour and 21-gun salute was given to him by the Armed Forces.
Macron also inspected the guard of honour.
From the airport, Macron went to the Hotel InterContinental where he later attended an official dinner hosted by the Bangladesh premier in his honour.
The French president later went to the Dhanmondi Lake to enjoy the music show performed by local band Joler Gaan.
Information and Broadcasting Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud was present at that time.
The French President is scheduled to leave Dhaka this afternoon.