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People's Daily Online>>Foreign Affairs

Turkey looks to strengthen ties with China

By Zhang Haizhou and Cecily Liu (China Daily)

09:15, February 21, 2012

BEIJING - Turkey would like to strengthen ties with China, a country it sees as sharing a positive economic outlook as well as many global concerns in the United Nations and G20, the Turkish ambassador said ahead of Vice-President Xi Jinping's visit to his country on Monday.

"The visit will be a historic milestone in bilateral relations and consolidate ties which have made substantial progress in every field imaginable since 2009," said Turkish Ambassador to China Murat Salim Esenli.

According to the Turkish embassy in Beijing, trade between the two countries totaled almost $25 billion in 2011 and there are aims to increase it to $50 billion a year by 2015 and $100 billion by 2020.

"Political stability, structural economic reforms, coupled with the prudent and tight fiscal and monetary policies of Turkey, have paved the way for uninterrupted growth from 2002 till the end of 2008," which has made Turkey one of the fastest growing economies in the world, the ambassador said.

However, Turkish trade with China is currently dominated by imports from China, which totaled $21 billion in 2011, with only $3 billion in exports.

In the short term, Turkey would like to even the balance more by attracting increased Chinese direct investment while maintaining a steady rise in Turkish exports in the long term, said Esenli.

Turkey's strategic location, dynamic economy, large domestic market, trade incentives, liberal legal system, and skilled labor force offer numerous opportunities to foreign investors in industries such as banking, construction, energy and mining, he added.

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