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5. September 2014 5 05 /09 /September /2014 21:43

~~Red carpet reception awaits Abe as he arrives Saturday Red carpet reception awaits Abe as he arrives Saturday Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe arrives in the city Saturday on a brief but crucial official visit, aiming to expand and deepen ‘Comprehensive Partnership’ between the two friendly nations. The less than 24-hour official visit takes place after 14 years since the visit of then Japanese Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori to Bangladesh in 2000, and both sides are considering it extremely important as Japan is looking for another suitable investment destination after China, according to a news agency. The two countries are ready to focus on investment issues, including Japanese assistance in ensuring energy security and major infrastructure development, apart from establishing a specialised economic zone exclusively for Japanese investors. A red carpet will be rolled out to receive the Japanese PM on his arrival in the afternoon accompanied by his wife Akie Abe. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will welcome her Japanese counterpart at the VVIP Lounge of Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport at 1pm. The Japanese PM will lead a 150-member delegation, including a 50-member business delegation, according to the Foreign Ministry here. During the visit, the summit meeting between the two Prime Ministers will be held at Chameli Hall of the Prime Minister’s Office from 4:15-5:05. Prior to the official talks, they will have a 15-minute tete-a-tete from 4pm. The two Prime Ministers will also witness the signing of a joint press statement at the Prime Minister’s office. The Japanese Prime Minister will also sign the visitors’ book. In the evening, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will host a banquet in honour of her Japanese counterpart at Sonargaon Hotel which will be followed by a cultural programme. The Japanese Prime Minister will also meet President M Abdul Hamid and Leader of the Opposition in Parliament Raushon Ershad in addition to his other programmes. BNP sources said BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia will meet Abe at Sonargaon Hotel at 6:30pm on the same day. The Japanese Prime Minister will address the Bangladesh-Japan Economic Forum, jointly organised by the Bangladesh Board of Investment (BoI), Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) and the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO) at the Sonargaon Hotel at 3pm. Abe will visit the National Mausoleum in Savar to pay tribute to martyrs of the War of Independence in 1971 and later the Bangabandhu Memorial Museum at Dhanmondi. Hasina visited Japan from May 25-28 at Abe’s invitation when they had a summit meeting on May 26. On Sunday morning, Abe will visit the faculty of fine arts at Dhaka University before leaving for the Sri Lankan capital of Colombo. The Japanese Prime Minister's wife will visit a missionary school in the capital and the nursing institute at Dhaka Medical College Hospital. During Hasina’s visit to Japan, Abe also pledged to give some 600 billion yen ($5.71 billion) in official development assistance to Bangladesh over the next four to five years, starting in fiscal 2015.

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