Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Thursday (January 12) placed six proposals before the G20 platform, saying these are needed to be addressed collectively for sustained global economic growth and development of the “global south”.
"Taking current global economy (amid Russia-Ukraine war and the Covid-19 pandemic) into account- it is high time to work collectively for a just and fair economic order," she said.
The prime minister said this while addressing virtually the “Inaugural Leaders' Session" in the "Voice of the South Summit 2023" in New Delhi, India, from her official Ganabhaban residence, reports BSS.
She thanked the Indian government for inviting Bangladesh as a guest country to this important summit that would give them a unique opportunity to engage with their counterparts across the globe
To this effect, the premier said that Bangladesh, a country of global South, welcomes India's vision as the President of G20 to ensure inclusive development under the theme, "One Earth, One Family, One Future".
"Let us work together to have a better future and a better world!," she added.
In her first proposal to achieve sustained global economic growth, the premier said global peace and stability must be maintained for greater benefit of humanity.
Secondly, she said it needs a new paradigm that will address inequality in a holistic manner in parallel with SDGs.
She also said thirdly, special financing needs for the most vulnerable countries, including LDCs, climate vulnerable countries, etc. must be met during their transition.
In her fourth proposal, the prime minister stressed the need for making bridge between the 'Digital Divides' to ensure equal opportunities for all, including women, saying take advantage of 4th Industrial Revolution by investing in young population for which financing and technology transfer support is vital.
Fifthly, she said all human beings should have equal rights to lead decent life.
"The global community must not forget ensuring return of the unfortunate Forcibly Displaced Myanmar Nationals to Myanmar," she said.
The premier finally said strengthen South-South and triangular cooperation to ensure global human development. "Here, support from partners, international financial institutions, private sectors, think-tanks, and other stakeholders are crucial," she added.
Almost five decades ago, she said that Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman urged to generate a sense of urgency for building a just 'International Economic Order' in the face of 'Great Economic Upheavals".
The prime minister warmly congratulated Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the government of India on assumption of G20 Presidency.
"I deeply appreciate his strong commitment to make the G20 platform more meaningful by consultative engagement on inclusive development," she said.
“I also congratulate Shri Narendra Modi for convening the ‘Voice of the South Summit’ to exchange views and for inviting me to the inaugural Leaders' Session on ‘Human-centric Development’, she said.
In Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina said that they believe in the core value of human development as the pillar of sustainable development and it is reflected in our policies.
"We are committed to contributing to Your Excellency’s (Modi's) robust initiatives to quicken human centric development in association with global leaders," she said.
The recent Covid-19 pandemic and the ongoing Russia- Ukraine conflict with sanctions and counter-sanctions have created havoc the world over, she said.
She went on saying that global recession, crises of food, fuel and fertilizers have added to the rising impacts of climate change making peoples' life unbearable.
"To face these challenges is required bold, concrete and concerted actions at the global level where human led approaches are the key," she said.
Quoting Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in his maiden speech at the UNGA in 1974, she said, "There is an international responsibility ... to ensuring everyone the right to a standard living adequate for the health and the well-being of himself and his family."
This vision remains relevant even today and in keeping with this spirit, “we are doing our best to ensure inclusive development with human beings at the centre”, she added.
In the last decade, the prime minister said Bangladesh had achieved rapid economic growth ensuring social justice for all.
"Bangladesh is acknowledged as one of the fastest growing economies in the world," she said.
The prime minister said IMF’s latest report showed that Bangladesh is the 35th largest economy of the world in terms of nominal GDP.
Bangladesh has reduced poverty rate from 41.5 percent to 20 percent in the last 14 years while the per capita income has tripled in just a decade, sheikh Hasina said.
Her country even has fulfilled all criterions for graduating from LDC category to a developing country, she said.
"It is gratifying that Bangladesh is ranked as world's 5th best COVID resilient country, and South Asia's best performer," she said.
As for financial and other incentives, 28 packages worth over USD 20 billion were directly reached to 73 million people and 2 hundred 13,000 organizations, she said.
"We aspire to build 'Smart Bangladesh" with improved physical infrastructures as foundation of a strong economy," the premier said.
Last year, she said they inaugurated the self-funded 'Padma Multi-purpose Bridge" that shall increase Bangladesh GDP.
A few days ago, Bangladesh started the first ever Metro Rail service in the capital city Dhaka, she added.
"Soon, we shall complete the 3.2 kilometer Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Tunnel under the river Karnaphuli in Chattogram, the first in South Asia," she said.
Meantime, she said Bangladesh's continuing “Ashrayan Project” has provided 3.5 million people with houses free of cost with means of livelihoods.
"For raising our people's standard of living, we are undertaking several other mega projects. For them, we need strong financial and technological support from the developed world. In this regard, I hope the G20 would be supportive," she added.
Sheikh Hasina went on saying that their aspiration is to transform Bangladesh into a knowledge-based country by 2041 and to build a prosperous and climate-resilient delta by 2100.
"We hope to attain these goals by way of ensuring sustainable economic growth and creating opportunities for all," she added.