Dhaka, July 10 (UNB) - Former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Wednesday branded Bangladesh as the “best teacher” in climate adaptation noting that what the people and government of Bangladesh have achieved in the practice of adaptation is nothing short of miraculous.
“Let’s all be inspired by the examples Bangladesh government and its people have shown in addressing climate change,” he said thanking the Bangladesh leadership for wisely and effectively adapting to this climate change.
The former UN chief made the remarks while addressing the inaugural session of the ‘Dhaka Meeting of the Global Commission on Adaptation’ at Hotel Intercontinental.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the event. Marshall Island President Dr Hilda Heine, World Bank CEO and Global Commission on Adaptation (GCA) co-chair Dr Kristaline Georgieva, Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen and Environment, Forests and Climate Change Minister Md Shahab Uddin also spoke.
Highly appreciating Bangladesh’s efforts, Ban Ki-moon said they are in Dhaka to learn from Bangladesh’s experiences and vision and send the message out across the world.
“….Bangladesh is thus the best teacher to learn from about adaptation,” said Ban Ki-moon, the current of the Commission.
Bangladesh is one of the most vulnerable countries due to climate change.
Citing reports, Ban Ki-moon said some 17 percent of Bangladesh will go under water by 2050 if sea levels rise by just one metre.
“We’ll work together (globally) to accelerate climate change adaptation around the world,” he said appreciating the political will and leadership shown in Bangladesh.
Ban Ki-moon said he had a very good discussion with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina before the inaugural session of the meeting. “We would like to establish an adaptation centre in Dhaka.”
He mentioned that he was in China 10 days ago where they established an adaptation centre in Beijing.
Another reason to hold this meeting in Dhaka, he said, is to speed up action on adaptation.
“Communities all over the world need help. There’re many countries who are just as vulnerable as Bangladesh, but which have not the ability to build resilience on their own,” Ban Ki-moon said.
He also cited Bangladesh’s long-term plan for the resilience of the delta, Delta Plan 2100, with the help of Netherlands. “We need to share this adaptation practices. We can urgently and cost-effectively find ways to support communities affected by climate change. We can help them survive and thrive. Adaption is a smart investment.”
Ban Ki-moon said the climate change is approaching much faster than one may think of and there is no time to lose.
He said the Commission will publish its flagship report noting that the report will be a different, action-oriented. “I can assure you that.”
Ban Ki-moon mentioned the 1970s when a cyclone killed half a million people. “Now you’ve effective adaptation system. You can save property and human lives. This is adaptation in action. This is why we’re here to learn from you and send message far and wide from Dhaka,” Ban Ki-moon said.
He mentioned that there were only 12 fatalities during Cyclone Fani in Bangladesh. “Thanks to the more accurate weather forecasting, community-based early warning system and cyclone centres -- 1.6 million people were moved to safety…”
In 2009, Bangladesh became the first country in the world to create national adaptation programme of action.
The Dhaka Meeting will prepare a set of recommendations on climate change adaptation for the UN.
Climate change is the defining issue of time and now is the defining moment to do something about it, according to UN.
There is still time to tackle climate change, but it will require an unprecedented effort from all sectors of society, it says.
To boost ambition and accelerate actions to implement the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, UN Secretary-General António Guterres will host the 2019 Climate Action Summit on September 23 to meet the climate challenge.
The Summit will showcase a leap in collective national political ambition and demonstrate massive movements in the real economy in support of the agenda.
Together, these developments will send strong market and political signals and inject momentum in the “race to the top” among countries, companies, cities and civil society that is needed to achieve the objectives of the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals, according to the UN.
Dhaka, July 10 (UNB) - Bangladesh High Commissioner to India Syed Muazzem Ali has recently met Indian External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar at his office in New Delhi and discussed various issues of mutual interest.
During the meeting, Syed Muazzem conveyed Bangladesh Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen's invitation to his Indian counterpart to visit Bangladesh, said the High Commission on Wednesday.
Jaishankar told the envoy that he would travel to Bangladesh at a mutually convenient time.
Syed Muazzem also conveyed Dr Momen's congratulations to Jaishankar on taking up his new assignment and wished him success.
Dhaka, July 9 (UNB) - Marshall Island President Dr Hilda Heine and former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon arrived here on Tuesday on a two-day visit to attend the ‘Dhaka Meeting of the Global Commission on Adaptation’.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is scheduled to inaugurate the key part of the two-day meeting on Wednesday morning at InterContinental Dhaka.
Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen received Marshal Island President Heine and Ban Ki-moon at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport upon their arrival.
Ban Ki-moon, the current chair of Global Commission on Adaptation (GCA), will address a session titled ‘Way forward and next step towards climate change adaptation’.
Dr Hilda, Ban Ki-moon and CGA CO-Chair Dr Kristaline Georgieva will address the opening session of the meeting.
The Marshal Island President and Ban Ki-moon are likely to visit Khrushkul Special Asrayan Project at Ukhiya in Cox’s Bazar district.
Foreign Minister Dr Momen will host dinner in honour of the dignitaries at InterContinental Dhaka in the evening.
Dr Hilda and Ban Ki-moon will leave Dhaka in the early hours of Thursday.
The foreign minister will see them off at the airport.
Dhaka, July 9 (UNB) – UN Secretary-General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development (UNSGSA) Queen Maxima arrived here on Tuesday evening to promote people’s access to financial services in Bangladesh.
Bangladesh is currently developing a national strategy to improve people's access to financial services.
In Bangladesh, only 36 percent of women have bank accounts, compared to 65 percent of men showing a gap of 29 percent (Global Findex 2017).
Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen received the Dutch Queen at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport on her arrival at 5:25pm, said an official.
Queen Maxima, who was appointed UNSGSA in 2009, visited Bangladesh in her capacity as UNSGSA in November 2015.
In her capacity, she advises the UN Secretary-General and works worldwide to make safe and affordable financial services available to all, including low-income groups and small and medium-sized enterprises.
She has been honorary patron of the G20 Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion (GPFI) since 2011.
Queen Maxima will be speaking, among other engagements, about improving women's access to financial services.
Ways of doing this include digitising the salary payments and supporting women entrepreneurs, according to UNDP.
She will also speak about the importance of introducing a national identity system and linking it to digital payment platforms.
The Bangladeshi National Strategy for Inclusive Finance (NFIS) will also be on the agenda.
On Wednesday, Queen Maxima will first meet development partners and representatives of the Fintech sector at the local UN office.
She will then visit a representative of iPay, which has developed the iPay e-wallet that customers can install on their smartphone and use to make online payments.
The Queen's last visit will be to ShopUp, Fintech, a business that helps small enterprises to sell their products via Facebook.
ShopUp also gives advice on running a business and applying for loans to fund business expansion.
On Thursday, Queen Maxima will participate in a roundtable meeting with private sector representatives.
She will then have a series of meetings with Governor of the Bangladesh Bank Fazle Kabir the Minister of Post and Telecommunication Mustafa Jabbar and a delegation from the Ministry of Finance.
Meetings on inclusive finance and the NFIS are also planned with President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
The Dutch Queen will meet President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Thursday and Wednesday respectively, an official told UNB.
Queen Maxima, who will leave Dhaka on Friday, is visiting Bangladesh at the invitation of the government.
Around 50 percent of adults in Bangladesh have a bank account or use other banking services, compared to only 31 percent in 2014 (Global Findex 2017).
Despite this increase, still 58 million adults lack access to a current or savings account, insurance policies, loans or digital payments limiting their opportunities for development.
Dhaka, July 9 (UNB) - World Bank Chief Executive Officer Kristalina Georgieva on Tuesday said Bangladesh has shown the world what can be done through disaster preparedness and adaptation despite being extremely vulnerable to climate change.
“I look forward to learning more about its successful innovations and how they can be applied elsewhere,” said the WB CEO who arrives here on her first visit on Wednesday.
During the two-day visit, she is scheduled to meet Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and senior government officials as well as visiting a World Bank-supported project.
The visit will help further deepen the longstanding partnership between Bangladesh and the World Bank Group, the Washington-based lending agency said in a statement on Tuesday.
Georgieva will also join the Third Executive Meeting of the Global Commission on Adaptation to be held in the city on Wednesday.
“The World Bank is proud to have a strong partnership with the government of Bangladesh. We support the country’s remarkable efforts to accelerate its development,” she said.
She will be accompanied by Hartwig Schafer, World Bank Vice President for the South Asia Region.
The World Bank was among the first development partners to support Bangladesh following its independence.
Since then, the World Bank has committed more than $30 billion, mostly in grants and interest-free credits to Bangladesh. Bangladesh currently has the largest IDA programme totalling $12.6 billion.