President Iajuddin Ahmed Thursday said with confidence that free and fair elections would be held in the country, as in the past, under the constitutionally guaranteed and time-tested caretaker government system, reports UNB.
He was talking to the outgoing Japanese Ambassador, Matsushiro Horiguchi, when the envoy made a farewell call on the President at the Bangabhaban.
The President requested the ambassador to take initiative to reduce the trade gap between the two countries and to import Bangladeshi exportables such as pharmaceuticals, jute and leather goods.
Iajuddin suggested exchange of teachers and students between Japan and Bangladesh.
The President extended warm welcome to the outgoing Japanese ambassador and mentioned the Prime Minister's successful visit to Japan in July last year and warm and cordial hospitality extended to her during the visit.
He observed that the outcome of the visit has opened up new avenues for further expansion of bilateral cooperation between the two countries. "Bangladesh attaches the highest priority to its relations with Japan," he said.
The President noted that Japan has been the largest development partner of Bangladesh. "Japanese official development assistance has made substantial and positive impact on the socioeconomic development of Bangladesh".
He requested the Ambassador to convey his best wishes to the emperor upon his return to Japan.
The outgoing Ambassador said Japan and Bangladesh maintain very good and warm relationship. He praised Bangladesh's role in strengthening SAARC.
The Ambassador expressed the hope that there would be "free and fair elections in Bangladesh and all concerned would cooperate in this respect".
The envoy appreciated Bangladeshi people, especially of rural origin, for their intelligence and hard work, stating that Bangladesh has a good future.
He suggested that there should be infrastructure development to attract Japanese FDI in Bangladesh.