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UAE

Sheikh Hasina has a message for Bangladeshi residents in UAE

The visiting Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has urged the Bangladeshi expat community in the UAE to be law abiding residents.

"We are proud of the hard work you are doing. Please follow the rules and regulations of the country that is hosting you," Hasina said during a sit-down interview with Khaleej Times on Tuesday.

The prime minister is currently in Abu Dhabi as part of a four-day official visit to the UAE that started on Sunday.

This is her first overseas visit after assuming office in January for a third consecutive term, and her fourth overall.

The premier also said Bangladesh is setting up vocational training centres for its citizens in order to encourage more semi-skilled workers to take up employment overseas.

Despite the burgeoning job market in Bangladesh, she said unskilled labour that want to migrate to the Gulf region will not be stopped from doing so.

"If people want to go, it is up to them. We will not stop them."

There are an estimated 700,000 Bangladeshi expats in the UAE.

Terming her visit "a successful one", Hasina said the UAE leadership has pledged support for Bangladesh by promoting investments in the fast-growing economy in South East Asia.

"I met the leaders of the country and they have shown interest in the development of Bangladesh."

The premier also met leading Indian businessmen, including M.A. Yusuff Ali, chairman and managing director, LuLu Group, and B.R. Shetty, chairman of UAE Exchange and founder-chairman of NMC Healthcare, on Tuesday.

Hasina will wrap up her trip on Wednesday morning and return to Dhaka, her office confirmed.

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