Tuesday, February 27

New vista of Tokyo-Dhaka partnership

New vista of Tokyo-Dhaka partnership

Speedy follow-up and implementation key

News Desk: The major elements of the Joint Statement on the outcome of the visit of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo  Abe to Bangladesh sound clearly target-specific, programmatic and visionary. As these spell out shared  intent, understanding and decisions  at highest  political level   the rhetoric phase enters the substantive one.Now these fall squarely  on  the bureaucracies and private sector leaders   to follow through ,coordinate and  implement   the decisions.

We  have often made a good start   but  when it came to follow-up measures we would be found wanting .The speed and competence with    which we meet our part of the bargain can make all the difference between  a  half-way house and a  fully  gainful bilateral engagement.

The questions are:What do the Japanese   want from us or aim at? How do we plan to  meet  their  already aired expectations?  According to Japan’s China –plus policy, Tokyo wants to  relocate its investment in and step up trade with a country like Bangladesh.It seeks special  economic zone  with emphasis on location,competitive incentives,improved infrastructure and labour supply as critical factors.

High –profile Japanese CEOs have made it clear that they look at Bangladesh as the next investment  destination;already steelmaker Nippon is willing to open a factory in Chittagong.

The two prime ministers agreed on a direction of economic cooperation under the initiative of  the Bay of Bengal Industrial growth Belt(BIG-B).Its three pillars are:Developing infrastructure,improving investment environment and fostering connectivity.

What we need to do is known;institutional linkages are in place,;and now we have to strike the iron when it is hot.