Today (23 August 2015) the Rt Hon Desmond Swayne, the UK’s Minister of State for International Development, arrived in Dhaka to reaffirm Britain’s commitment to supporting Bangladesh’s development and to engage with local audiences about the UK Government’s priorities.
During his three day visit, the Minister will also assess progress made towards promoting economic prosperity and development in Bangladesh. The UK supports the Government of Bangladesh’s aim to achieve middle income status within the next decade. Following on from Bangladesh’s commitments on ending child marriage, made at the 2014 Girl Summit in London, the Minister will want to find out more about ongoing work to tackle this important issue.
UK International Development Minister Desmond Swayne said:
“2015 is a crucial year for development and I am very pleased to be here in Bangladesh. Our countries have a strong relationship built up over the years and I want to see that become even stronger as Bangladesh flourishes and leads its own development.
“Over the next few days I want to meet people who are benefitting from the UK’s support and also those working hard to ensure our help reaches those who need it most.
“High on my agenda will be finding out more about progress made around safety in the garment industry since Rana Plaza as well as seeing how DFID’s support has transformed livelihoods in the Chars. I also want to find out more about life in urban areas where community groups and savings programmes, along with business and technical training, are giving people the tools to lift themselves out of poverty.’’
The Minister will meet a range of people including the top government officials, development partners, civil society, the business community and most importantly ordinary Bangladeshis who have benefitted from the UK’s support.
Notes to editors
- The Rt Hon Desmond Swayne TD was appointed as Minister of State at the Department for International Development on 15 July 2014. He was elected Conservative MP for New Forest West, in Hampshire, in 1997.
- Following the election of David Cameron as leader of the Conservative Party in December 2005, Desmond was appointed as his Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS). He maintained his role as a PPS in government until appointed a Government Whip in September 2012.
- On 13 July 2011, Desmond was appointed a Privy Counsellor.
- From 1980 to 1981 Desmond was a school teacher in Economics at Charterhouse, then Wrekin College from 1982 to 1987. From 1988 to 1996, he was Manager of Risk Management Systems at the Royal Bank of Scotland.
- The Minister of State represents DFID in the House of Commons.