Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Friday called upon the international community to immediately address disruptions of global logistics and supply chains to rein in soaring commodity prices.
"There must also be targeted international support to revitalise global trade and export earnings, especially of the LDCs and other vulnerable countries," she told the first high-level meeting of Global Crisis Response Group on Food, Energy and Finance (GCRG) organised by the United Nations.
The GCRG has been established by the UN to coordinate the global response to the widespread impacts of the war in Ukraine.
The group has on board the world's six eminent leaders: Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina, Prime Minister of Barbados Mia Mottley, Prime Minister of Denmark Mette Frederiksen, Chancellor of Germany Olaf Scholz, President of Indonesia Joko Widodo, and President of Senegal Macky Sall.
Joining from her official residence Ganabhaban, Sheikh Hasina said the war in Ukraine comes at a time when the world is still struggling to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic. It has added serious stress on the already fragile global economy.
"We have attained self-sufficiency in food production and ensured energy security. However, the Ukraine war has made the situation extremely volatile."
Short supply and unusual price hike of food, fuel and other commodities have already put serious strain on the lives of the common people, the PM also said.
"As a representative of the global South, I bring to the table the voices of the millions of people who are the most affected due to this crisis," the PM continued.
The least developed countries (LDCs) and small island developing states (SIDs) are bearing the heaviest brunt. They need immediate and targeted support measures to overcome this situation, she noted.
"We must strengthen global solidarity and adopt a well-coordinated response. The G-7, G-20, OECD, and international financial institutions have a crucial role to play.
"I am happy to see that the Steering Committee of this Group comprises all the major financial institutions. We will lend our full support to their efforts for tailoring actionable recommendations to tackle the crisis," the prime minister said.
"We will lend our full support to their efforts for tailoring actionable recommendations to tackle the crisis," she added.
The advanced economies and multilateral financial institutions have to come forward and grant duty-free-quota-free market access, and more accessible financing, the PM also said.
In another proposal, she said it is imperative to put more focus on increased technology support and investments for the agricultural sector, for effective food storage and distribution systems.
"As the President of the 48-member Climate Vulnerable Forum, we have had the opportunity to work with many SIDs and low-lying climate vulnerable countries. In those countries, the agro-food system is under serious stress.
Our national development journey has led to many innovative climate actions. We wish to share our knowledge, understanding, and experience in addressing the challenges of climate change, biodiversity loss and environmental degradation for the benefits of others," she said.
She reiterated that Bangladesh is a strong believer in multilateralism.
"We have always responded to the UN's call to contribute to global peace, stability, and development. Our commitment to supporting this Group stems from that conviction."
As a nation, she said, Bangladesh is known for resilience against the most daunting challenges. The Covid-19 pandemic is its latest example.
"Our pandemic recovery efforts were marked by a careful balance between protecting lives and livelihoods," she said.
She said her government had put the most vulnerable people at the forefront of its recovery efforts. they widened the coverage of social protection to support those who are the furthest behind.
"Timely measures to procure vaccines helped us avert a major health crisis and saved lives," she told the forum.
She said her government also took pragmatic initiatives to support its export sector and SMEs. Stimulus packages worth $23 billion were rolled out. And these measures helped the country achieve a 6.94% GDP growth rate in the last fiscal year, she said.