By Rasana Gasimova
Turkey intends to increase mutual trade turnover with Azerbaijan to $15 billion by 2023, Vice President of Turkey Fuat Oktay said during the Azerbaijan-Turkey Business Forum held in Baku on September 16.
"Last year, the turnover between the two countries amounted to $ 3.4 billion. We plan to increase it to $ 15 billion by 2023," Oktay said.
He added that the two countries will sign preferential trade agreement before the end of 2019.
Azerbaijani Economy Minister Shahin Mustafayev who was also participating in the forum, noted that Turkey is one of the main trade partners of Azerbaijan.
“At the end of 2018, the trade turnover between the countries reached $ 3.4 billion and increased by 28%. According to the results of 7 months of 2019, the trade turnover amounted to $ 2.3 billion, which is 33% more than that in the period of January-July 2018,” the minister said, adding that over 3,000 Turkish companies are currently working in Azerbaijan.
"Turkish companies completed work within 300 projects in the public sector of Azerbaijan in the amount of $ 15.5 billion," Mustafayev said. The minister also expressed hope that the volume of preferential trade between Nakhchivan and Turkey is also increased.
Turkey’s investments in the Azerbaijani economy has reached $ 12.2 billion so far, and Azerbaijan’s investments in the Turkish economy has reached $ 15 billion, according to Mustafayev.
The forum had been organized by the Azerbaijani Export & Investment Promotion Foundation (AZPROMO) and the Foreign Economic Relations Board of Turkey (DEIK). It was attended by about 300 businessmen from both countries working in trade, industry, energy, transport and logistics, construction, agriculture, finance, health and other sectors.
Addressing the forum, head of DEIK Nail Olpak said there was big potential for developing cooperation between the private sectors of the two countries.
“We are planning to expand our relations in the spheres of food supply, technologies, industry and other areas of cooperation. Besides, Turkish businessmen have been offered to participate more actively in the privatization process in Azerbaijan,” Olpak said.
In his turn, President of AZPROMO Yusif Abdullayev noted that Azerbaijan would like to expand its product yield to the Turkish market.
The preferential trade agreement that the countries will sign by late 2019, provides for the introduction of a zero rate of customs duty on mutual deliveries of goods between Turkey and Azerbaijan. In October 2017, Turkey also exempted goods supplied from the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic of Azerbaijan from duties. In total, the list includes 43 names of products (13 agricultural, 30 industrial goods).
Follow us on Twitter @AzerNewsAz