26 March 2018, The Hague: To observe 47th Independence and National day in the Netherlands, a reception was hosted by the Embassy of Bangladesh in the Netherlands. The reception was held in Bangladesh House, which was nicely decorated with traditional decorative items, posters, banners and green and red flowers to introduce the guests with beautiful Bangladesh. Red carpet was rolled out as a symbol of Bangladeshi hospitality and the entrance were adorned with colourful flowers. A large number of guests, comprised of local dignitaries, diplomats, academics, scientists, judges, and a cross section of members of media, Bangladeshi diaspora in the Netherlands joined in the ceremony.
Ambassador Sheikh Mohammed Belal along with the members of the Embassy greeted the guests in Bangladeshi hospitality. At the outset, Ambassador Belal paid tribute to the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman whose courageous leadership led Bangladesh to her independence in 1971. In his remarks, Ambassador Belal highlighted how Bangladesh has been sailing through prosperity since our independence in realizing the Father of the Nation’s dream, a “Sonar Bangla- Golden Bengal”- hunger-free, poverty-free and deprivation-free Bangladesh. He also paid tribute to the three million martyrs who made supreme sacrifices for the sake of the country.
Ambassador Belal stated that the country is attaining rapid, inclusive and sustainable development under the astute leadership of the Hon’ble Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. Bangladesh has made significant progress in the social sector and achieved almost all the MDGs. The United Nations Committee for Development Policy, on completion of its review of the LDC category, announced on 15 March 2018 that Bangladesh has met all the three graduation criteria – Per Capita Gross National Income, Human Asset index and Economic Vulnerability Index – for the first time. We are now striving to make Bangladesh a peaceful, secular, pluralistic and knowledge-driven middle-income country by 2021 and a developed country by 2041.
He further mentioned that as a nation, Bangladeshis are peace loving humane nation. Who have the courage to give shelter to over one million forcibly displaced Myanmar nationals Rohingyas on humanitarian ground.
To attain the optimum benefit, Ambassador urged to the Dutch Business people to be partner of Bangladesh’s obvious development. He also thanked the Bangladeshi community living in the Netherlands for their contributions to strengthen the tie of two friendly countries irrespective of economic and commercial relations. He also requested them to further connect Bangladesh and the Netherlands through sharing Dutch innovation and creativity and their experience achieved in different sectors.
Ambassador mentioned that Bangladesh and the Netherlands are enjoying excellent bilateral relations which has been further deepened following the visit of Hon’ble Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to the Netherlands at the invitation of Dutch Prime Minister in 2015 and thereafter exchange of few high level visits.
On behalf of Dutch Government, Ms. Mira Woldberg, Head of South and South East Asia and Oceania Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands delivered her remarks. In her remarks, she congratulated Bangladesh on this happy occasion and briefly highlighted the areas of mutual cooperation between two countries. Mentioning that Bangladesh has achieved amazing socio-economic growth, she stated that the Netherlands is among top five investors in Bangladesh and they would continue their support for further enhancement. On behalf of the Netherlands Government, she commended Bangladesh for her outstanding position towards humanity. She acknowledged with deep appreciation that Bangladesh provided shelter to millions of forcibly displaced Rohingyas. She assured that the Netherlands will stand with Bangladesh to resolve the crisis.
Earlier, at the midnight of 26 March 2018 Embassy officials along with family members and members of Bangladesh community attended the programme of simultaneous rendering of the national anthem followed by ceremonial flag hoisting and recitation of message of Hon’ble President, Prime Minister, Foreign Minister and the State Minister for Foreign Affairs issued on the occasion of 47th Independence day and National day.
Overall guests appreciated the arrangement and enjoyed the evening with traditional Bangladeshi food.