Australian High Commissioner in Dhaka Jeremy Brewer has expressed hope that the upcoming national elections in Bangladesh will be participatory, free and fair. Pointing out that the government has been promising to hold such elections for a long time, the High Commissioner said, his country welcomes participatory elections. However, he expressed concern over the incidents of violence on the streets for several weeks. Jeremy Brewer said his country encourages constructive protest rather than violence. The High Commissioner hopes that a fair election environment will return to Bangladesh, so that people can freely exercise their right to vote.
The High Commissioner said these things in response to questions from reporters at a briefing after a meeting with Planning Minister MA Mannan on Monday. The meeting was held at the minister’s office in the capital’s Sherebangla Nagar in the Ministry of Planning. However, there was no discussion in the meeting with the Australian High Commissioner about the election or street violence, said the Planning Minister.
The minister said that he has requested the high commissioner to ease the visa process for Bangladeshis. He talked about visa ease especially for students. The Minister made this request regarding the High Commissioner’s interest in the development of the education sector. He also requested the High Commissioner to take unskilled and semi-skilled workers from Bangladesh.
MA Mannan said, Australia is one of the 10 major export markets of Bangladesh. Exports are constantly increasing in the country. I have requested the High Commissioner to take more products from Bangladesh. The minister also highlighted the import of coal, wheat, milk and fur etc. from Australia for Matarbari.
In response to a question regarding Australia’s investment in Bangladesh, the High Commissioner said that the investors of his country are interested in increasing investment in an easy way. But this requires a good business environment. Bangladesh has that opportunity. He expressed hope that Australian investors will decide on this. Apart from this, Jeremy Brewer praised the economic development of Bangladesh for the last 15 years.