Bangladesh is the world's 8th most populous country with a population of 173 million. It hosts approximately one million Rohingya refugees, which places it among the world's top ten refugee host countries.
Bangladesh is also one of the most climate-change affected countries and the second exporter of ready-made garments in the world. The country has made significant progress over the past decades in human development, poverty reduction and economic growth, allowing it to graduate to Middle Income Country status in 2026.
The European Union supports Bangladesh towards sustainable and inclusive development, in line with the Bangladesh Five Year Plan, the United Nations 2030 Agenda, and the EU’s Global Gateway and Indo Pacific Strategies.
Team Europe in Bangladesh brings together the EU, European Investment Bank, Denmark, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Italy, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.
The EU adopted a Multiannual Indicative Programme for the period 2021-2027 under the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument (NDICI-Global Europe). Under that framework, the EU allocated €306 million in grant funding to the partnership with Bangladesh over 2021-2024. Bangladesh also benefits from a number of multi-country EU programmes. Investments will also be mobilised through the European Fund for Sustainable Development Plus (EFSD+), Global Gateway’s main financial tool.
Our flagship initiatives
Team Europe in Bangladesh focuses its action on several key sectors:
- Energy – to increase Bangladesh’s energy efficiency and to maximise the use of renewable energy sources to meet its increasing energy demand, through the Green Energy Transition Team Europe Initiative (TEI). EU support focuses on:
- Policy: improving the regulatory framework to implement a green and just energy transition in Bangladesh, policy and regulatory reforms, including technology and knowledge sharing
- Power system: building a power system that leads to maximum coverage of the country’s energy demands through renewable energy while reducing greenhouse gas emissions, energy consumption and demand through energy efficiency in line with Global Gateway priorities
- Decent work - to support the government’s labour reforms and decent work agenda, through the Decent Work Team Europe Initiative, the EU, together with Denmark, Netherlands and Sweden, focuses on:
- Labour laws: supporting the revision of labour laws in line with international labour standards. This helps enterprises become more inclusive, safe, sustainable and competitive, therefore supporting decent work
- Child labour: supporting the elimination of child labour for hazardous occupations and the development of quality labour market governance institutions and promoting sustainability of industry
- Education and skills development – to ensure that youth is better-educated, trained and qualified and has access to employment and decent work opportunities. With this aim, the EU Human Capital Development Programme for Bangladesh 2021 focuses on:
- Primary education: strengthening the national system of primary education to improve quality and access to primary education as well as management and governance of primary education and vocational training
- Teachers: improving teachers’ education and professional development
- Vocational training: improving the policy framework in vocational training and skills development, including revision of National Skills Development Policy and training of teachers
- Skills development and employment opportunities for youth: helping young people have access to good and relevant education and thus opening pathway to decent employment
- Migration: to address the root causes of irregular migration. EU support includes reintegration of returnees, prevention of trafficking in human beings and smuggling of migrants, as well as climate and disaster-induced displacement
- Rohingya crisis - to work for a sustainable solution for the Rohingya people. EU support includes access not only to humanitarian assistance but also to livelihood support and development opportunities