President of the Swiss Confederation to visit Bangladesh

Media release, 01.02.2018

The President of the Swiss Confederation H.E. Mr. Alain Berset will pay an official visit to Bangladesh on 04-07 February 2018. In the first official visit by a Swiss president to Bangladesh, there will be two main focuses: solidarity with a country that is severely affected by the crisis in neighbouring Myanmar, and the establishment of closer bilateral relations.

During the visit, official talks with Hon’ble President H.E. Md. Abdul Hamid, Hon’ble Prime Minister H.E. Sheikh Hasina and Hon’ble Foreign Minister H.E. Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali are planned. Apart from underscoring the current status of bilateral relations, the two countries will discuss ways to further strengthen economic, development and cultural cooperation during the visit.  In addition, solidarity with Bangladesh in the Rohingya crisis will be a major focus of the talks, as will cooperation at multilateral fora.

On Tuesday, 6 February, Mr. Berset will visit the Kutupalong camp in the Cox’s Bazar district, where Switzerland provides humanitarian aid to refugees from the Rohingya ethnic group who have fled Myanmar. During his stay in Bangladesh, Mr. Berset will meet with the representatives of Civil Society, Swiss businesses active in Bangladesh, and will visit at the Dhaka Art Summit, of which the Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia is a partner.

Switzerland and Bangladesh enjoy longstanding relations in the area of development cooperation: Bangladesh is a priority country in Swiss development cooperation. At the same time the bilateral economic relations are growing. The volume of trade between the two countries has more than doubled since 2010.