Minister Bolat: “Turkiye is Committed to Elevating Trade with Tunisia”

Turkiye and Tunisia Aim for Higher Trade and Investment Figures

Trade Minister Omer Bolat has announced a firm commitment to boosting the trade volume between Turkiye and Tunisia, which surpassed $1.6 billion in 2023. Speaking at the Turkiye-Tunisia Investment and Business Forum organized by the Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEIK), Minister Bolat highlighted the strategic discussions and collaborations that have been taking place to enhance bilateral trade and investment.

At the forum, Bolat emphasized that DEİK and its Tunisian counterpart, UTICA, have facilitated valuable roundtable meetings, firm presentations, and project evaluations. He assured that the Ministry would support and monitor the decisions and investment initiatives arising from these discussions.

Strong Economic Performance and Strategic Partnership

Minister Bolat drew attention to Turkiye’s resilient economic growth amid global economic challenges, noting a 5.7% growth in the first quarter of this year following a 4.5% increase last year. He proudly announced a record monthly export figure of $24.1 billion for May, with annual goods and services exports reaching $260 billion and $104 billion, respectively.

He praised Tunisia’s potential as a strategic trade and investment partner, citing its educated, young, and dynamic workforce, proximity to Europe, and Free Trade Agreement with the EU. Bolat highlighted Tunisia’s encouraging policies towards foreign investments and public-private partnerships and expressed confidence in increased contributions from Turkish investors.

Expanding Trade Horizons

Reflecting on the growth in bilateral trade, Bolat noted that trade between Turkiye and Tunisia has risen from $318 million 20 years ago to over $1.6 billion in 2023. Despite a slight dip from $2 billion in 2022 due to global trade stagnation, both countries are determined to elevate these figures significantly.

Bolat identified several sectors ripe for investment, including tourism, energy, phosphate, and agriculture. He underscored Turkiye’s capability in renewable energy, noting that 42% of Turkiye’s energy production comes from renewable sources. Turkish firms are ready to collaborate with Tunisia to help it achieve its goal of generating 30% of its electricity from renewables by 2030.

Strategic Projects and Long-term Investments

Minister Bolat pointed out the potential for collaboration in processing Tunisia’s significant phosphate reserves and noted the substantial growth potential in the retail sector. He highlighted ongoing and upcoming infrastructure projects in Tunisia, including port improvements, airport renovations, and extensive road network expansions, totaling $4.5 billion in 33 projects.

He encouraged Turkish firms to seize these opportunities and contribute to Tunisia’s development plans, which also include public-private partnerships in logistics, energy, water, and urban planning.

Concluding his remarks, Bolat highlighted the deep historical ties and brotherly relations between Turkiye and Tunisia, expressing optimism that economic and trade partnerships will reach unprecedented levels, benefiting not only the two countries but also neighboring regions, Africa, and even the EU markets.

Source: Trthaber / Prepared by Irem Yildiz

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