Bangladesh and Nepal have emphasised the operationalisation of the (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal (BBIN) Motor Vehicles Agreement (MVA) framework to contribute to the individual country's economy not only by expanding trade and connectivity, but also by creating more opportunity to promote people-to-people contacts.

Bangladesh also emphasised the expeditious conclusion of tripartite power agreement among Bangladesh-India-Nepal soon, which will help Bangladesh to import power from Nepal, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The issues were discussed at the third round of Foreign Office Consultations (FOC) between Bangladesh and Nepal held in Kathmandu on Wednesday.

During the consultations, Bangladesh delegation was led by Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen, while Nepali delegation was led by Sewa Lamsal, Foreign Secretary of Nepal. Ambassadors of both countries and other senior officials attended the meeting.

During the FOC, the whole gamut of bilateral relations was reviewed.

Both the foreign secretaries expressed satisfaction over the excellent bilateral relations that exist between Bangladesh and Nepal.

They discussed all the major issues of mutual interests and agreed to promote cooperation encompassing all sectors, especially trade and commerce, transit and connectivity, power and energy sector, tourism, culture and education.

The Bangladesh foreign secretary thanked the government of Nepal for allocating land for the construction of Monastery in Lumbini.

He added that it would be a milestone between "our relations and enhance people-to-people contacts between Bangladesh and Nepal in the days ahead."

Foreign Secretary Sewa Lamsal stressed the exploration of the untapped potential in economic, cultural and educational areas and proposed to establish meaningful collaborative partnership including in the private sector.

She mentioned that Nepal would like to pursue more trade and investment cooperation with Bangladesh.

She urged Bangladeshi side to explore investment opportunities in Nepal including in hydropower sector.

She also requested the Government of Bangladesh to eliminate the existing Other Duties and Charges (ODCs) levied on Nepali products being exported to Bangladesh.

The Nepali foreign secretary emphasized the exchange of visits at different levels.

Both sides discussed regional issues of mutual interest.

They also underscored the necessity of revitalising SAARC and strengthening BIMSTEC for promoting regional cooperation.

They also agreed to cooperate with each other at various multilateral forums, especially at the UN to pursue common interests especially in the areas of LDC graduation, poverty alleviation, climate change and safety and security of migrant workers.

An MoU between Foreign Service Academy of Bangladesh and Foreign Service Institute of Nepal was also signed by the Foreign Secretaries of the two countries.

In the afternoon, Masud Bin Momen paid a courtesy call on the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Narayan Kaji Shrestha at the latter's office in Singha Durbar.

During the meeting, discussions were held on issues of mutual interest between Nepal and Bangladesh.

The next FOC will take place in Bangladesh at a mutually convenient time.

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