The red carpet was rolled out as the President of the Swiss Confederation Alain Berset arrived on a four-day official visit yesterday, the first official visit by any Swiss president to Bangladesh.
President Abdul Hamid received his Swiss counterpart at the Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport around 1:15pm.
Cabinet members, including Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali and State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam, dean of diplomatic corps, chiefs of three services, Inspector General of Police, secretary concerned to the president, among others, were present.
A smartly turned out contingent comprising members of Bangladesh Army, Air Force and Bangladesh Navy gave guard of honour to the Swiss president.
He was welcomed with a 21-gun salute.
Two tiny tots presented bouquets to President Berset.
After the reception at the airport, the Swiss president was taken to Sonargaon Hotel in a ceremonial motorcade where he would be staying during his visit.
He would visit Savar National Mausoleum to pay homage to Liberation War martyrs today.
He would also visit Bangabandhu Museum at Dhanmondi to pay respect to Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
The Swiss president would have official talks with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at her office this afternoon and President Abdul Hamid would host dinner in honour of his Swiss counterpart at the Bangabhaban this evening.
President Berset would visit Rohingya camps in Cox's Bazar district tomorrow.
The Swiss Embassy in Dhaka said the visit is focused on solidarity with a country that is severely affected by the crisis in neighbouring Myanmar and the establishment of closer bilateral relations.
Apart from underscoring the current status of bilateral relations, the two countries would discuss ways to further strengthen economic, development and cultural cooperation during the visit, according to the Swiss Embassy.
Berset would visit the Kutupalong camp in the Cox's Bazar tomorrow, where Switzerland provides humanitarian aid to Rohingyas refugees.
During his stay in Bangladesh, Berset would meet civil society representatives, Swiss businesses active in Bangladesh, and visit the Dhaka Art Summit, of which the Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia is a partner.
Switzerland and Bangladesh enjoy longstanding relations in the area of development cooperation. Bangladesh is a priority country in Swiss development cooperation.
At the same time, the bilateral economic relations are growing.
The volume of trade between the two countries has more than doubled since 2010.