Trade Minister: Ready to Collaborate to Advance Trade Relations with the US

Minister Bolat attended the 39th American-Turkish Conference organized by the Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEİK) Turkey-US Business Council (TAİK) in collaboration with the US Chamber of Commerce and the American Turkish Business Roundtable (ATBR).

Emphasizing that Turkey and the US have been allies for over 70 years, Bolat expressed the value they place on partnership with the US.

Bolat said, “We strongly believe that we have a common interest in advancing our bilateral relations in every possible area.”

Bolat pointed out that the world is on the brink of a new industrial age and that the pandemic, along with geopolitical upheavals and supply crises in critical sectors, has changed the nature of traditional production and distribution strategies.

Highlighting the tragedy in Gaza, Bolat noted that Turkey has made the greatest contribution to the people of Gaza, is striving to make the ceasefire permanent, and is leading diplomatic efforts to restore the much-needed peace in the region amidst this uncertain environment.

“We need to enhance dialogue between our countries and business communities” Bolat stated that global foreign direct investments are also declining and that the competition to attract investors is higher than ever. He said, “To overcome the challenges, the US and Turkey need to cooperate more closely than ever.”

Bolat pointed out that although the current cooperation falls short of its potential, it reflects a positive trend, saying:

“Our commercial relations have been steadily increasing in recent years. Just like trade, investments also constitute an important dimension of economic relations. We observe an increase in investment flows in both directions and in different sectors. While we have observed a significant trade and investment volume in recent years, we still have a long way to go to reach the $100 billion trade volume target set by our presidents. Turkey is determined to achieve this goal, and we are ready to collaborate to advance our trade relations. In a world where we are more confronted with uncertainties than ever before, we need to enhance dialogue between our countries and business communities at every level.”

Finally, mentioning that officials from both countries came together under the Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA), Bolat reported that important issues for the business communities of both countries were discussed.

Bolat stated that they will also meet with US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo during their contacts in the US and noted that the “Trade Winds,” one of the important trade events of the US, will be held in Istanbul next week.

“We will continue our efforts to make our country an attractive destination for investments” Bolat pointed out that Turkey’s recent economic performance is indicative of the country’s strength, stating that the economy has achieved remarkable growth in the last 21 years.

He emphasized that the increase in goods and services has been one of the driving forces of the country’s economic growth during this period, stating that Turkey’s average economic growth between 2003 and 2023 was 5.4% annually, partly due to exports.

Bolat said, “We will continue our efforts to expand the scope and volume of our exports and to make our country an attractive destination for investments in line with our goals. “

Pointing out that the world is facing significant challenges such as the pandemic, climate change, and geopolitical tensions, Bolat emphasized that as the reliability of supply chains becomes more important, Turkey will become more attractive to investors.

“We believe that Turkey’s strong production infrastructure is quite attractive for American investors” Bolat expressed their satisfaction with American companies contributing to Turkey’s production, employment, and exports, noting that their numbers are increasing every day.

Minister Bolat said, “We believe that Turkey’s strong production infrastructure, production bases, and diversified supply chains are quite attractive for American investors.”

Acknowledging the difficulties and pending issues in trade relations with the US, Bolat highlighted that protective measures against steel and aluminum exports from Turkey to the US continue to hinder the economic and trade relations between the two countries.

source: prepared by Melisa Beğiç

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