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Turkey to sign FTA with far-east nations

World Bulletin / News Desk | 15 January 2014

Turkey to sign FTA with far-east nations

Turkey’s Economy Minister announced that Turkey will sign free trade agreements with Japan, Singapore and Malaysia.

Turkish Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci on Tuesday said that Turkey will swiftly sign free trade agreements (FTA) with Japan, Singapore and Malaysia upon Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s directives.

In his address on the second day of a week-long meeting of the 6th annual Turkish Ambassadors’ Conference in Turkish capital Ankara, Zeybekci expressed hope that the Japan-Turkey FTA would be signed before the European Union’s FTA with the far eastern country.

The head of the Turkish economy touched upon Turkey’s worldwide achievements in economy by saying, "We are the top nation to fly to the African continent as Turkish Airlines. We rank 16th among world economies and have exports to 250 different customs territories. Turkey is a country that has left its mark not only on Asia and the Caucuses, but also on the Middle East and the Balkans throughout history thanks to its pride-worthy landmark artifacts."

Regarding the FTAs Turkey would ink, Zeybekci argued, "The EU has launched talks with Japan on an FTA, which we expect to last at least four years in the slow-paced structure of the 28-member union. We will start official talks with Japan as of June 1 and hopefully finalize the talks before the EU does and sign the Japan-Turkey FTA."

Adding that they also began efforts for another FTA with Singapore, Zeybekci said technical talks with Malaysia for an FTA had been completed and the agreement would be signed in mid-April by the prime ministers of the two countries.

"We believe the new areas in the Asia-Pacific region to be opened by the FTAs will potentially increase our foreign trade volume to at least 7-8 billion US dollars, a figure 10 tenfold the current one," concluded Zeybekci.

Turkish contractors’ projects abroad worth $31.3 bln in 2013

"The total cost of the 374 projects undertaken by Turkish contractors in 45 countries in 2013 reached $31.3 billion," said Turkish Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci on Wednesday.

Zeybekci commented on the data regarding the Turkish contracting sector’s performance abroad, and highlighted Turkey’s improvement in 2013 which resulted in over 30 billion US dollars worth of contracts. He noted that Turkey reached the highest number of projects with a total of 374 undertaken in 45 countries.

"Last year, we added South Sudan and Senegal to the countries we are conducting projects for. Turkmenistan was the top country with the highest cost of projects we undertook in 2013, 60 projects worth USD 10.5 billion. The other countries to follow Turkmenistan are Russia, Azerbaijan, Iraq and Kazakhstan," said Zeybekci.

The Turkish economy minister also noted that Iraq was the top country with 65 projects where Turkish companies conducted the highest number of projects in 2013.

 source: World Bulletin