Dhaka, Oct 20 (UNB) - Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday put emphasis on boosting trade and commerce between Bangladesh and Vietnam for improving the status of the two countries with mutual benefits.
"We can enhance our trade and commerce to utilise the huge population of the Southeast Asia," she said.
The prime minister said this when outgoing Vietnamese Ambassador in Dhaka Tran Van Khoa made a courtesy call on her at her office.
PM's Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim briefed reporters after the meeting.
He said Sheikh Hasina said Vietnam has a special place in the hearts of Bangladeshis and both the nations struggled for their national independence.
"The people of Bangladesh always extended support to the Liberation War of Vietnam," she said.
The prime minister recalled that a delegation of youths from Bangladesh visited Vietnam after its independence. "Sheikh Kamal, the eldest son of the Father of the Nation, was one of the members of that team," she said.
Sheikh Hasina conveyed her regards to the Vietnamese premier through the ambassador. She also recalled her visit to Vietnam in 2012.
The Vietnamese envoy laid emphasis on bolstering cooperation in the fields of trade, tourism and people-to-people contact between the two countries. "We can learn from each other in this regard," he said.
Tran Van Khoa mentioned that the existing annual trade volume between the two countries is US dollar 800-900 million. "We want to take the amount to $1-billion mark," he said.
He highly appreciated Bangladesh's tremendous and impressive development under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the last three years when he was discharging his duties.
"Bangladesh has made its strong position in the international arena due to this development," he added.
Referring to the existing bilateral ties between the two countries, Van Khoa said Vietnam attaches the highest priority to its relations with Bangladesh.
Both the prime minister and ambassador expressed the hope that the relations would be deepened further in the days to come.
Secretary to the Prime Minister's Office Sajjadul Hassan was present at the meeting.