Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, during a bilateral meeting with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday, stressed the need for migration of Bangladeshi workers in legal ways.
"Bangladeshi workers are doing very good work here. They have enough credibility. I don't want illegal workers," she was quoted as saying.
Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen briefed reporters after the meeting.
On her arrival at the Italian Prime Minister's office 'Palazzo Chigi', Sheikh Hasina was received by her Italian counterpart, Giorgia Meloni. Later, the Bangladesh Premier was given a guard of honour there.
Many issues, including undocumented Bangladeshi expatriates, bilateral trade and business, came up for discussion in the bilateral meeting held between the two leaders.
Giorgia Meloni said they don't want illegal Bangladeshis to stay in Italy as the local people don't want it.
"They opened the door for Bangladesh to send workforce in legal ways," said Momen.
The Bangladesh Premier said both documented and undocumented Bangladeshis are working for the welfare of the two countries.
But, she said, Bangladesh also discourages illegal migration. "I maintain a zero-tolerance policy towards illegal migration," she said.
The Bangladesh side asked Italian authorities to stop Bangladeshis who migrate to Italy through illegal channels from other countries.
Mentioning that her government is developing 100 economic zones and 39 hi-tech parks in Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina asked Italy to invest in these special zones and parks. "If you want, I offer you special economic zones," she added.
Giorgia Meloni said Italy and Bangladesh can strengthen bilateral trade and business through joint collaboration.
Sheikh Hasina asked Italy to ease the import process of leather goods from Bangladesh.
In response, the Italian side showed enough interest in this regard.
Sheikh Hasina thanked Italy for extending support to Bangladesh on the Rohingya issue.
She asked Italy to embolden their support for the repatriation of Rohingya refugees to their own motherland Myanmar, from Bangladesh.
When Sheikh Hasina invited her to visit Bangladesh, the Italian Premier accepted it, saying that she would definitely visit Bangladesh.
Two MoUs on energy and cultural cooperation were exchanged between Bangladesh and Italy in the presence of two prime ministers.
The documents -- a memorandum on energy cooperation and a five-year cultural exchange programme - were exchanged between Bangladesh Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen and Italian Deputy Prime Minister and also Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani.
Under the MoU on energy cooperation, Italy will extend research support and investment in LNG, renewable energy, waste to energy and bio-fuel energy.
PM's Speechwriter Md Nazrul Islam and Bangladesh Ambassador to Italy Md Shameem Ahsan were present at the briefing.