Bangladesh Ambassador to Việt Nam & Laos Samina Naz writes to Việt Nam News on Bangladesh’s 52nd Independence and National Day on March 26.
As Bangladesh celebrates its 52nd Independence and National Day on March 26, we must take a moment to reflect on the nation’s remarkable achievements since it declared independence from Pakistan in 1971. This is a day of joy for us, to commemorate the birth of our nation and to remember the struggle of our freedom fighters for liberation from oppression.
Bangladesh has come a long way since its independence. The past five decades have been a period of tremendous progress for us, and the country has made remarkable steps in terms of economic development, social progress, and international recognition.
We have achieved remarkable success in various areas, from health to education and infrastructure to poverty alleviation. Our country is now a vibrant democracy and a leader in the region in economic growth.
Honourable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in a recent interview with CNN
Under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, the last 14 years have been a period of remarkable economic transformation for Bangladesh. The country has achieved miraculous economic growth and has become one of the fastest-growing economies in the world.
The economic outlook of Bangladesh has improved significantly, and our country has become a middle-income nation, much to the delight of its citizens.
According to the World Bank, the country’s GDP per capita has more than tripled from US$511 in 2005 to $1,664 in 2020, and is currently estimated at $3,104. The country has achieved impressive economic growth rates of over 6 per cent annually since 2010.
It has achieved several of the Millennium Development Goals, including reducing its poverty rate from 44.2 per cent in 2005 to 24.3 per cent in 2018, and is now less than 20 per cent.
This economic growth has been accompanied by a vibrant presence in the international arena. Bangladesh has been leading in global platforms such as the United Nations, the G20 and the Non-Aligned Movement. It has also successfully negotiated trade agreements with major global players such as the EU, the US and China.
The country is also making strides in the areas of education, health and infrastructure. The government has invested heavily in primary education, resulting in a significant improvement in literacy rates.
Healthcare facilities have also been improved, with the government launching a number of initiatives, such as the Health Inclusion Projects and the community health centres at the very grassroots level.
The country has made significant strides in reducing infant and maternal mortality rates, improving access to clean water and sanitation, and expanding access to education.
As we mark the 52nd Independence and National Day of Bangladesh, we pay homage to the Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, who has been and still is the rock of our nation.
Our achievements in the last 14 years are an embodiment of the unfulfilled dreams of Bangabandhu. He had envisioned a prosperous, self-reliant, and progressive Bangladesh.
His daughter and current Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina, has been instrumental in realising the dream of her father. She has been the driving force behind many of the initiatives that have made Bangladesh a success story.
We are proud to note that the golden jubilee of diplomatic relations between Bangladesh and Việt Nam falls in 2023.
Bangladesh was the first country in South Asia to recognise and establish diplomatic relations at the ambassadorial level with the then Interim Revolutionary Government of Việt Nam, leading from the south.
In the last five decades, both countries have made immense progress in bilateral trade and investment. The bilateral trade between the two countries increased significantly in 2022, and the trend continues even in 2023.
Việt Nam’s exports to Bangladesh in 2022 have reached USD 1.3 billion, and Bangladesh’s exports to Việt Nam in 2022 have reached $110 million.
As we celebrate this day, let us remember the sacrifices of the millions of martyrs who laid down their lives for the cause of an independent Bangladesh. Let us also pay tribute to the vision of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the strong leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. Let us take pride in the progress made by Bangladesh in the last five decades and be optimistic about its future.
On our national day, we also express our sincere gratitude to Việt Nam for the strong diplomatic relations between the two countries.
We look forward to further strengthening the ties of friendship and cooperation between Bangladesh and Việt Nam in the coming 50 years and beyond. Let us strive together to build a better world, a world of peace, progress and prosperity.
Long live Bangladesh-Việt Nam friendship!
Happy Independence and National Day of Bangladesh! VNS