COLOMBO (News 1st) – Bangladesh Foreign Minister Dr A K Abdul Momen has underscored the need for setting up direct shipping connectivity with Sri Lanka to boost trade relations between Bangladesh and the South Asian nation.He also emphasised the resumption of negotiations for the early conclusion of the Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) between the two countries.Bangladesh's foreign minister put the importance while holding a meeting with his visiting Sri Lankan counterpart Ali Sabry on Wednesday on the eve of the 22nd ministerial meeting of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) in the capital, a foreign ministry press release said on Thursday.During the meeting, the two leaders discussed the wide spectrum of bilateral relations and expressed hope to work closely together for the betterment of the two peoples and inclusive development of the region.Momen urged Sri Lanka to increase the import of agricultural products and pharmaceuticals from Bangladesh at an affordable price.Sri Lankan foreign minister said that his country is keen to work in close partnership with Bangladesh.The two leaders agreed to expedite the completion of the formalities to form an institutional platform to hold regular and comprehensive dialogues between the two countries at the level of foreign minister.The issue of mutual support for each other's candidature at various international fora was also discussed with due importance.Momen also sought support from Sri Lanka in repatriating the forcibly displaced Myanmar nationals sustainably.
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