The President of Bangladesh, General Ziaur Rahman held talks at the European Economic Community headquarters in Brussels on Friday (27 April).
The President of Bangladesh, General Ziaur Rahman held talks at the European Economic Community headquarters in Brussels on Friday (27 April). He arrived in Belgium on Wednesday (25 April) after two days in Holland.
SYNOPSIS: President Zia's visit to EEC headquarters came at the end of a three-day stay which included meeting with Belgian Premier Wilfried Maertens and EEC President Roy Jenkins. The culmination of his trip was the signing of a deal giving Bangladesh a two hundred million franc (six point seven million dollar) loan. The country is one of the world's poorest but the economy has shown steady improvement following massive doses of aid from the World Bank and various United Nations organisations.
Bangladesh is rich in offshore gas deposits and General Zia has spent much of his time in Europe encouraging foreign investors to help exploit gas reserves. The government has embarked upon a broad economic programme with the emphasis on agriculture and rural development, though mining operations are also being stepped up. With the population expected to almost double by the year 2000, the Belgian loan should go some way towards achieving Bangladesh's aim of self-sufficiency in rice production.