The announcement was made after a high level virtual meeting between the U.S. Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment, Keith Krach, and Salman F. Rahman, Adviser for Private Industry and Investment to the Prime Minister of Bangladesh.
According to the press release issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, government of Bangladesh, the high level economic partnership consultation noted the shared vision of a free, inclusive, peaceful and secure Indo-pacific region.
The US agreed to ask the American companies to invest in key sectors like energy, IT, pharmaceutics and agriculture.
Bangladesh and US agreed to implement reforms to improve the investment climate for US sourced Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Bangladesh.
Recognising the importance of secure internet and innovative digital ecosystem to facilitate cross border flow of information and data, both the countries agreed to have senior level conversation to move towards expanding 4G connectivity and developing 5G networks and services.
The meeting also discussed issues relating to cooperation in the field of energy. They agreed to establish an energy sector dialogue to facilitate commercial engagement with US energy companies. It noted that the U.S. Department of Commerce has created a U.S.-Bangladesh Energy Industry Working Group to connect US companies to regional market opportunities.
On the issue of connectivity, both countries appreciated the signing of the US-Bangladesh open skies air transport agreement which paves the way for direct flights between the two countries. The US also appreciated Bangladesh for the financing agreement to purchase 70 locomotives for Bangladesh Railways to enhance regional connectivity and its neighbours.
The high level meeting with Bangladesh is considered an important step by the US to challenge China’s presence in the region, said Nikkei Asia in its report.