During two separate meetings between the World Bank vice president and the finance minister and the state minister for power yesterday, Bangladesh called for stronger relationship with the development partner to boost different sectors of the country.
In a bilateral meeting with the Vice President of the World Bank's South Asia Region Martin Raiser, Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal thanked the World Bank for funding various development projects including Bangladesh's education, health, electricity, and tackling disaster sector, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The finance minister emphasised on making the World Bank's partnership more effective and fruitful in various initiatives for the socio-economic development of the country. He also said the World Bank can share the experience of different countries to make Dhaka a more livable city.
In the meeting with the finance minister, Martin Raiser praised the economic development of Bangladesh.
He also appreciated the various timely steps taken by Bangladesh to deal with Covid-19 under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
Martin Raiser termed the continuation of Bangladesh's progress an example for many countries in the world.
He said Bangladesh is one of the highest IDA borrower countries. Bangladesh will adopt its own economic policies, with the World Bank as a partner.
On the completion of 50 years of relationship between Bangladesh and the World Bank, the World Bank wants to share the success story of Bangladesh's indomitable progress to other countries. The World Bank has a strong relationship with Bangladesh and the World Bank will always stand by Bangladesh, said Raiser.
A bilateral meeting on power, energy and mineral resources was also held yesterday between State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid and a delegation of the World Bank at the ministry conference room.
Martin Raiser led the World Bank delegation and discussed various issues of mutual interest.
Nasrul Hamid talked about achievements, expectations and challenges in power and energy sector.
He said, in the future, electric vehicles and hydrogen power will contribute to the power and energy sector.
The WB can contribute to preparing Hydrogen Policy and make stakeholders interested in electric vehicles, the state minister said.
Seeking cooperation of the WB for developing Bangladesh Power Management Institute to international standard, he said it was needed to enhance partnership with the World Bank to boost wind power capacity, transmission and distribution system.
Nasrul said that renewable energy, captive power, climate change, global energy crisis, solar irrigation pumps, lithium batteries, hydropower, regional power trade, net metering and rooftop solar, green building, electricity and efficient and cost-effective use of energy, oil refineries and land based LNG terminals were discussed.
Regarding the World Bank's financing, he requested the vice president not to waste time in financing the projects.
Expressing his happiness to work with Bangladesh, WB Vice President Martin Raiser said skill development, regional cooperation and transmission system are very much promising sectors.
Expansion of renewable energy and exploring new areas of potential are making Bangladesh shine, he said.
The WB expressed its interest in efficiency improvement, renewable energy and power trade issues.
With the WB financing, two projects related to gas meter was approved, which will begin its work in 2023.
Some six projects having World Bank's financing in the power sector were going on.
Among others, Energy Division senior secretary Md Mahbub Hossain, Power Division secretary Md Habibur Rahman, WB South Asia Regional Director (Infrastructure) Guangzhe Chen and Acting Country Director Dandan Chen were present.