13th March marks the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Bangladesh and Switzerland. Five decades ago, Switzerland formally recognized Bangladesh as an independent state on this very day. On the occasion of crossing this special milestone of bilateral relations, Bangladesh President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina were greeted by Switzerland President Ignazio Cassis.
A statement from the Swiss Embassy said in a congratulatory message, the President of Switzerland, Ignazio Cassis emphasized the need for long-term cooperation between the two countries in various fields, as well as the need to continue expanding and deepening bilateral relations.
Noting that the partnership between the two countries is “stronger than ever before”, Ignazio Cassis identified recovery, peace and prosperity from the Covid-19 epidemic, climate change and sustainable development as key areas for future cooperation.
For the past five decades, Switzerland has been a reliable economic and development partner of Bangladesh. The country has invested more than 1.3 billion US dollars in development assistance to Bangladesh. It has also provided significant grants through various international financial institutions. In terms of development cooperation, Switzerland has been emphasizing innovative projects that are effective and beneficial for marginalized people in Bangladesh.Bilateral trade has also grown rapidly between the two countries, reaching more than 1.10 billion US dollar annually. It is said that at present most of the Swiss multinational companies are conducting their business activities in Bangladesh and providing essential products, technologies and services in important socio-economic sectors.
Aspiring to be a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council, Switzerland is hopeful of further strengthening relations with Bangladesh in a multilateral forum to address global peace and security challenges.