Turkiye: Visa issues may hamper exports, says association

Problems regarding obtaining visas for EU member countries for truck divers, staff and executives working at exporting companies are posing serious challenges, says Ümit Mirza Çavuşoğlu, the president of the Western Mediterranean Exporters’ Association (BAİB).

Those visa issues may lead to a significant decline in exports, Çavuşoğlu said.

He particularly complained about difficulties in obtaining visas for EU member nations.

The EU is Türkiye’s largest export market. In the first three months of 2024, the bloc absorbed some 43 percent of Türkiye’s exports, or $27.1 billion, according to the latest official data.

“This has become a serious obstacle to our trade. People from exporting companies cannot travel to attend business meetings. They are in a very difficult situation,” Çavuşoğlu said, adding that truck drivers are struggling with the same problem.

Even if there are planned delegation meetings or important trade fairs, visa appointments for business people are scheduled for two months later, according to Çavuşoğlu.

Visa appointments are rejected on the grounds that some people who traveled to EU countries last year did not return, he said.

Turkish officials have been holding talks to resolve those issues but no progress has been made, Çavuşoğlu added.

The other key issue is truck drivers’ visa problems, he said. “If they cannot travel,we cannot have our goods delivered to customers. This will cause a significant decrease in our exports.”

Members of the association did not make a good start to 2024 due to weak global demand and geopolitical developments, Çavuşoğlu said, adding, however, that the outlook improved in the past month.

Source: hurriyetdailynews

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