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Bangladesh enjoys warm, broader relationship with WB: Mahmood Ali

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DE Online Desk
Finance Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali today said that Bangladesh enjoys a warm and broader relationship with the World Bank while the lending agency is ready to continue it and thus lend more support to the country.
“We need support and they (WB) are ready to help us,” he said.
The Finance Minister said this when the World Bank country director to Bangladesh Abdoulaye Seck made a courtesy call on him at the Ministry of Finance at Bangladesh Secretariat today.
Sharing his earlier visit experiences with the country director to the Rohingya camp in Cox’s Bazar along with the then World Bank President, Mahmood Ali said that the crisis is still there.
Answering to a question, Ali said that the World Bank has raised some issues on reforms.
“I don’t want to mention those. Let’s work on those,” he added.
World Bank Country Director Abdoulaye Seck said that they have just had a very good meeting with the newly appointed Finance Minister.
“You know that the support to Bangladesh is extremely strong and large. We talked about bringing the support into new heights,” he said, adding that the World Bank along with its sister concerns like the International Finance Corporation (IFC) is ready to continue support to Bangladesh.
Alongside lending financing, Seck said reforms are also critically important. “We discussed about how economic reforms agenda is very urgent to move in several fronts, whether it is on exchange rate policy, fiscal policy, safety net policy to protect the most vulnerable from shocks. It is also about banking sector reforms, and it’s a huge agenda,”
He said the World Bank Group really stands ready to support Bangladesh in carrying out the reforms.
Responding to a question, Seck said that the World Bank has invested over more than $52 billion to Bangladesh since independence while currently the lending agency has over $16 billion of commitments in this country across wider areas or sectors like health, education, energy.
The World Bank Country Director said they are more committed to continue support for attaining inclusive growth by Bangladesh.
Replying to another question, Seck said in order to becoming a prosperous and developed country by 2041, financing alone would not work for Bangladesh, rather reforms would make it happen.

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