St. Petersburg eager to recruit skilled Bangladeshi professionals

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DHAKA : Governor of Leningrad Oblast in Russia Alexander Drozdenko has expressed willingness to recruit skilled professionals especially medical doctors from Bangladesh.

He expressed his interest when he met Bangladesh Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali at the Governor Mansion in St. Petersburg on Saturday, foreign ministry sources said here today.

During the meeting, the governor briefed Ali about the historic importance of St. Petersburg, a city built by Czar Peter the Great and the growing economic importance of the city as a trade and transit hub of the eastern and western parts of the entire Europe.

The two sides also discussed possibility of joint venture in ship building industry for production of medium sized vessels and fishing trawlers.

Referring to Bangladesh’s world class export items like pharmaceuticals, ocean going vessels, leather goods, tea, potato and aromatic rice, which are very popular in different European markets, Ali opined that these Bangladeshi goods have great potential in Russian markets.

Besides, Foreign Minister Ali visited Russian Joint Stock Company Gazprom’s Head Quarters in Moscow and met with its Chairman Alexey Miller on Friday when he made a short briefing on priorities set by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to turn Bangladesh into a Middle-Income Country by 2021 and Developed one by 2041.

He was accompanied by the Bangladesh Ambassador in Moscow Dr. Saiful Hoque, Energy and Mineral Resources Secretary Nazimuddin Chowdhury and senior foreign ministry officials.

In this connection, the foreign minister laid emphasis on the high demand for energy for a fast growing economy, which grew by 7.1 percent in 2016 and highlighted the successful signing of two important intergovernmental agreements between Bangladesh and Russian Federation.

They are- Agreement on the Establishment of Intergovernmental Commission on Trade, Economic, Scientific and Technical Cooperation and Agreement on visa-free visits of diplomatic and official passport holders.

Later, he mentioned these instruments as the landmark for advancing the ongoing discourses ahead.

In this context, he highlighted Prime Minister’s personal confidence on Gazprom’s mission in Bangladesh which is evidenced by its rapid involvement in 15 gas wells with ostensible successes.

Mentioning the involvement of Gazprom in Bangladesh is very low, Miller urged Bangladesh side to explore other commercial involvement with Gazprom not only in exploration but also in production and distribution, LNG supply and terminal construction and pipeline laying, among others.

Bangladesh Energy Secretary Chowdhury acknowledged the necessity for concluding the MOU on Cooperation in Energy Sector between the governments and said that the draft proposed is at final stage of consideration and could be signed in future.

Managing Director of Gazprom’s subsidiary company, Gazprom EP international BV, Andrei Fick, among others, was present. Gazprom has recently opened its office in Dhaka and is poised to involve in a big way in Bangladesh.

The foreign minister welcomed the interest shown by Gazprom and invited the company to come and invest in Bangladesh in a bigger way, they added.

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