12 September 2024. The president of France, Emmanuel Macron, is visiting Dhaka after attending the Group of 20 Summit in New Delhi on September 10th. Previously the former President Mitterrand visited Bangladesh in 1990 from February 22 to 24. Marcon’s visit in Bangladesh is the first visit by a French president in thirty years.
On Monday, Macron met with Hasina and paid a visit to the memorial for her father, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the first president of Bangladesh.
Last Tuesday, the French Embassy confirmed that the French president Emmanuel Macron will keep carrying out France’s agenda in Indo-Pacific territory. This visit offers a possibility to deepen bilateral ties with a country that is pursuing rapid economic development, with France’s support, and looking to broaden its international alliances.
Bangladesh and France have similar points of view on the Paris Agenda for the Planet and People. And Bangladesh diligently endorses the agenda. President Macron emphasises France’s commitment to helping Bangladesh given its increased vulnerability to the effects of climate change, especially in light of its ongoing flooding problems.
Additionally, Bangladesh contributes significantly to global solidarity initiatives by taking part in peacekeeping missions and sheltering Rohingya refugees.
Diplomatic analysts consider the visits of representatives of two important nations as particularly important in light of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine and the upcoming national election in Bangladesh.
In the wider area, China and the United States are competing for influence, and Macron proposes France as a potential partner.
The new strategic step between France and Bangladesh, according to the prime minister of Bangladesh, is intended to help bring about stability and peace on a regional and international scale.
In Bangladesh, where the current government dominates the parliament and effectively runs it as a rubber stamp, general elections are scheduled for prior to the end of the month of January, and some Western nations have expressed concern about the political atmosphere there.
Macron’s Visit for Implementation of France’s Agenda
Bangladesh plays a crucial role in this geographical establishment since France is currently focusing on improving relations with countries in the Indo-Pacific area. The relationship between France and Bangladesh has significantly improved recently, as evidenced by a rise in bilateral trade that has reached around three billion euros. A French representative asked Bangladeshi businesses to invest there in June 2024.
This year in early July, a French Naval forces ship visited Chattogram on a goodwill mission and took part in a joint drill with the Bangladesh Navy. The French Ambassador in Bangladesh, Marie Masdupuy, issued a statement in support of this visit, emphasising that the ship’s presence demonstrates France’s political commitment to supporting Bangladesh. It also recognises the strategic importance of Bangladesh within the larger Indian Ocean region.
The visit of the French President Emmanuel Macron to Bangladesh is strategically significant for advancing Indo-Pacific relations, tackling global problems like security and climate change, and managing shifting geopolitical forces. Concerns about the impending election in Bangladesh and the alleged mistreatment of winner of the Nobel Prize Dr. Mohammad Yunus will also be discussed during the visit. The results of the visit will influence regional dynamics and bilateral ties.