RIYADH: The desert kingdom Saudi Arabia is developing its agriculture. The expatriate Bangladeshis are expected to play the pivotal role of the facilitators in this advancement.
Bangladesh ambassador in Saudi Arabia Golam Moshi said that the kingdom will import farm labors from Bangladesh and those farm labors are likely to bring a revolution in the desert.
In an exclusive interview with Banglanews on Tuesday (April 21) the ambassador put up his future plan indicating some important features.
Moshi is scheduled to present his credentials to Saudi King Salman bin Abdul Aziz in royal Yamama palace on April 22.
He said that Saudi Arabia is importing workers from Bangladesh in twelve categories including domestic help, gardener and driver.
‘My second target is to bring farm labor here in this country,’ the envoy added.
Moreover, the embassy is working to bring skilled manpower in this country.
The envoy further said, “We had several meetings with the agriculture associations of this country and those associations will take up the matter with the Labor Ministry of Saudi government in bringing the farm labors from Bangladesh”.
In this sector there are opportunities of employment from 4 lakh to 5 lakh workers.
“After my joining here I met some ministers of Saudi government and they all lauded the role of Bangladesh and the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.”
He mentioned that present bilateral relation between the two countries is better than any time before.
He informed the media that Saudi Arabia imports goods from Bangladesh worth 215 million dollar every month and it can be raised to 1 billion dollar in the next 2/3 years.
Moshi further said that when Bangladesh commerce minister came here last month, the Saudis assured all kinds of cooperation for the minister’s initiatives.
The embassy is also working to increase the volume of readymade garments and vegetables importation.
He said that the Saudi government has assured cooperation in SME sector. Initiatives of establishing a Saudi chamber in Bangladesh has also been taken up.
According to the envoy, a market of subcontract works with a tune of 80 billion dollars exists in Saudi Arabia each year. The works are mostly done by the Indians, Pakistanis and Lebanese.
‘I will try to engage Bangladeshi companies in this sector’, Moshi added.
He added that Saudi government has given consent to cooperate in supplying urea fertilizer, crude oil, specialized cancer hospital, burn unit and education cost for learning Arabic in madrasas at a throw away cost.
He said, “Our Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has assigned me with some special tasks including the abolition of Kafil (sponsor) system. Meanwhile we held meetings with Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (Sagia) about how the Bangladeshi investors can invest here without sponsors”.
The ambassador said that within next November 24 of 2015 Bangladesh government is firm to deliver the Machine Readable Passports (MRP) to all the expatriates. The embassy is working hard in that direction.
“Moreover, the embassy’s five mobile units are working in the Bangladeshi inhabited areas and the number of mobile units will be increased in near future for MRPs.”
The ambassador said that in absence of a regular school in Saudi Arabia we have taken steps to setup seven community schools.
“Our Prime Minister has given assurance to finance those schools and necessary plan has also been drawn up in this regard.”
BDST: 2011 HRS, APR 22, 2015