Cultural diversity ministerial forum begins in city May 9Cultural Correspondent
A three-day cultural diversity ministerial forum will begin on May 9 with the participation of government delegates from 30 Asia Pacific countries, said the cultural minister, Abul Kalam Azad, at a press conference at the PID office on Sunday.
The prime minister, Sheikh Hasina, will inaugurate the programme at the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre and the UNESCO director general, Irina Bokova, will attend the ceremony as guest of honour.
The programme, however, will continue at the Sonargaon Hotel and the Ruposhi Bangla Hotel, the minister said.
State minister for cultural affairs advocate Promod Mankin, cultural secretary Suraiya Begum, cultural personality Ramendu Majumdar, amongst others were present at the conference.
Peoples Republic of Bangladesh and United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation have jointly orgnised the programme to grow awareness to ratify UNESCO’s ‘Convention on the Protection and Promotion of Cultural Expressions, 2005’ amongst the countries in the Asia-Pacific region, informed the minister.
One hundred twenty one countries across the world have ratified to the convention, though only 12 out of 44 countries of the Asia Pacific region has ratified it so far. Bangladesh ratified the convention in 2007.
‘It will also strengthen the multilateral relations amongst the participants and bilateral relations with Bangladesh,’ the minister expected.
Representatives from each member countries will present their papers at the seminar on the first and second day progamme. A cultural programme depicting culture of the member countries will also be held.
On the concluding day, representatives from non-ratified countries will give their feedback about the conference. There will also be a joint statement titled Dhaka Declaration with a special call for strengthening cultural cooperation in a perspective of a sustainable development in the region.
The participants will visit the Jatio Sangsad and the national mausoleum at Savar.
Besides, Bangladesh Shilpakala Acdemy will organise a cultural programme for the participants at the Ruposhi Bangla Hotel. The programme also includes a grand exhibition at the same venue.
Moreover the UNESCO director general Irina Bokova will visit the historic sites of the country. She will also meet some ministers and will also deliver a speech on the climate change issue.
A total of 43 countries had been invited to join the conference and 32 countries, including twelve already ratified member countries of Asia Pacific region Bangladesh; Cambodia; Laos; China; India; Mongolia; Afghanistan; New Zealand; Indonesia; Pepublic of Korea; Viet Nam; PDR Lao, have so far confirmed their participation in the three-day event
In response to Bangladesh government’s proposal of arranging the programme, International Fund for Cultural Diversity (IFCD) of UNSECO approved the project. ‘USECO is funding 38,000 US dollars (31 lakh 16 thousand BDT) and Bangladesh government is funding taka three crore 55 lakh,’ informed the minister.
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