The Swiss foreign minister, Joseph Deiss, has told Bangladesh that increased investment will boost the countries' bilateral ties.
Deiss, who is on a tour of Asian states, arrived in Bangladesh late on Friday. It is the first ever visit by a Swiss minister to the South Asian nation.
Deiss told a news conference that he had signed an agreement on promotion and reciprocal protection of investment, which would create new opportunities for both Swiss and Bangladeshi entrepreneurs. The agreement was concluded following talks with his Bangladeshi counterpart, Abdus Samad Azad on Saturday.
Exports from Bangladesh to Switzerland rose by 41 per cent last year to a value of SFr51 million, against the same volume of imports. Deiss said he expected trade to increase.
Switzerland and Bangladesh are long-standing development partners, with direct Swiss assistance totalling SFr399 million. An average SFr25 million annually is dedicated to projects focusing on water supply and sanitation, rural infrastructure and transport.
swissinfo with agencies