Business

Minister of Trade: We are ready to provide all kinds of support to the investors who will come to Turkey

Minister of Commerce Mehmet Mus stated that they are determined and willing to take all necessary steps to maximize the economic and commercial relations with Georgia and Azerbaijan and said, “We are ready to provide all kinds of support and convenience to both Georgian and Azerbaijani investors in the investments they will bring to our country.”

Trade Minister Mehmet Mus spoke at the “Turkey-Azerbaijan-Georgia 6th Business Forum” held at the Baku Congress Center.

Pointing out that Turkey, Azerbaijan and Georgia are at the center of the world’s energy and logistics routes with their geostrategic locations in the South Caucasus, Mus said that the potential of these three countries should be used in the best way and cooperation should be increased.

Expressing that the barriers to trade should be removed and the economies should be further strengthened, Mus said, “In this direction, I would like to emphasize once again that we, as Turkey, are determined and willing to take all necessary steps to maximize our economic and commercial relations with Georgia and Azerbaijan. As Turkey, we are proud to be one of the most important trade partners of both Azerbaijan and Georgia.”

Stating that the trade volume with Azerbaijan increased by 6.5% in the January-November period of this year compared to the same period of the previous year, it was realized as $4.5 billion. He stated that efforts are continuing intensively to expand the scope of the preferential trade agreement, which entered into force in March and will contribute to bilateral trade. Mus said that by expanding the scope of this agreement, the number of tradable products will increase and this will have a positive impact on the trade figures.

“COLLABORATION IN THE FIELD OF ENERGY LINKS COUNTRIES TO EACH OTHER ECONOMICALLY”

Stating that the trade volume between Turkey and Georgia increased by 20% and reached $1.9 billion as of the same periods, Muss said, “Turkey has become the most important trade partner of Georgia since 2007 and has maintained its first place in Georgian imports. We continue to work on the revision of the Turkey-Georgia Free Trade Agreement, which will also carry our commercial relations to much better levels.”

Noting that the investments made a significant contribution to the bilateral trade and economic relations with the dimension of increasing both employment and welfare, Mus continued as follows:

“Turkish investments in Georgia, including those on third countries, have reached $1.2 billion today. Turkey’s direct investments in Azerbaijan have reached $12 billion with investments made through third countries, while Azerbaijan’s $19.5 billion in Turkey. It has billions of dollars worth of investment. I would like to express once again that we are ready to provide all kinds of support and convenience to both Georgian and Azerbaijani investors in the investments they will bring to our country.

Both countries are among the countries where our companies undertake a significant number of projects abroad. To date, Turkish contracting companies have successfully completed 455 projects worth $15.4 billion in Azerbaijan and 275 projects worth $5.2 billion in Georgia. Our contractors will continue to contribute to the development of the infrastructure and superstructure of friendly countries, especially Azerbaijan and Georgia.”

Minister Muss drew attention to the deep and developed economic and commercial relations between these three countries that played the biggest role in reaching a strategic level in the relations between Turkey, Georgia and Azerbaijan.

“Especially the cooperation in the field of energy, deepening with international giant projects, connects countries economically. Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan Crude Oil Pipeline, Baku-Tbilisi-Erzurum Natural Gas Pipeline, Trans-Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) are concrete signs of cooperation between the three countries in the field of energy. The cooperation that started in the field of energy has recently been supported by logistics and has turned into a more effective strategic cooperation.”

“WE WANT TO ESTABLISH A COMMON LOGISTICS INFRASTRUCTURE”

Stating that the importance of the region has increased with the transportation routes on the east-west axis, Mus said:

“In this context, the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars (BTK) Railway Project is of great importance. Our ultimate goal is to establish a common logistics infrastructure where shipments are not limited by quotas, goods are transported freely, costs are reduced to reasonable levels, customs procedures are simplified and accelerated, and barriers to the movement of goods are removed. At the point we have arrived at, I am of the opinion that we can improve the opportunities provided by the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars Railway Line, not being limited to the current gains. In this sense, we wish to complete the technical work that needs to be done on this line for capacity increase and rapid transportation as soon as possible.”

Minister Mus also touched upon the works in the field of customs and stated that they signed the agreement establishing the Joint Trilateral Customs Committee between Turkey, Azerbaijan and Georgia in order to develop cooperation between customs administrations and find solutions to common problems.

“FORUM IS AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE COMMERCIAL AND ECONOMIC COOPERATION FLOOR”

Stating that they continue their work without slowing down for the mutual recognition of authorized obliged parties, Muss said, “I sincerely believe that we will achieve successful works in the future with the joint efforts of the customs administrations of the 3 countries in order to provide convenience to our business people. Within the framework of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars Railway Project, we will sign the Advanced Data Exchange Agreement for the Facilitation of Customs Transit Transactions as soon as possible. We also agreed to start the e-TIR Project. These works will continue to provide convenience to you, our business people, in trade.”

Emphasizing that the deepening tripartite cooperation between Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey in the South Caucasus and the mechanisms created serve the common interests and expectations of the three countries in a wide variety of fields, from economy to security, Mus said, “The Turkey-Azerbaijan-Georgia Business Forum is also an important part of the commercial and economic cooperation ground. We are grateful to our business people in this sense, our relations are getting stronger thanks to them.”

Source: Sabah / Translated by Irem Yildiz

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