Sheikh Hasina’s Upcoming Visit to Tokyo: Exploring the Prospects of Intensifying Socio-Cultural Cooperation in Bangladesh-Japan Relations

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Japan, the Land of the Rising Sun has a rich heritage of culture, and its equally rich literature so far produced two Nobel laureates. The vibrant world of Japanese art, music, anime, and, movies -all can be a significant source of cultural exchanges between Bangladesh and it. Besides, Bangladesh and Japan share a common Asian Identity compared to any other nations in Asia. Japan is defined as an all-weather friend of Bangladesh since the inception of its independence. Bilateral ties between Bangladesh and Japan span a variety of domains, including socio-economic and people-to-people ties. Consequently, people tend to perceive this relationship in a reductionist manner focusing mainly on aid and asymmetry. However, these two countries have similar guiding norms and motives like peace, stability, freedom, protection of human rights, and democracy which they share in different degrees provide a solid foundation for a strong partnership. However, this dimension of the bilateral relationship doesn’t get enough importance in the policy and academia, which merits serious attention. As Bangladesh aspires to graduate from the position of a lower middle-income nation to an upper middle-income country and from an LDC to a developing country, the bilateral cooperation socio-cultural domain is now more important than ever. In this context, the upcoming visit of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina deserves enormous significance to refocus on the social and cultural dimensions of bilateral relations.

A New Horizon to ‘Heart to Heart’ Relations

Japan is pioneering Bangladesh’s achieve the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and promote Bangladesh as a significant economic power in the South Asian and Indo-Pacific regions. To lessen the negative economic and social effects of adopting the Sustainable Development Goals, Japan has been helping Bangladesh.

– Saume Saptaparna Nath is a Research Associate at the KRF Center for Bangladesh and Global Affairs (CBGA).

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