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Erdogan Calls For Boosting Turkey, Poland Trade to $10B

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Turkey, Poland sign 5 agreements covering defence, science, education and culture during president's 1-day visit to Warsaw.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called for boosting bilateral trade volume with Poland to $10 billion within the next five years as both sides signed five agreements in capital Warsaw on Tuesday.

The agreements were signed following a closed-door meeting between Erdogan and his Polish counterpart Andrzej Duda.

The Turkish president began his day-long official visit to the country earlier Tuesday. The visit comes two days ahead of an EU leaders’ meeting that is due to focus on migration, defense, digitalization and foreign affairs, including EU relations with Turkey.

The five bilateral agreements signed in Warsaw covered the defense, science, education and culture sectors.

Speaking at a joint news conference following the signing of the agreements, the Turkish president said: "$6 billion trade volume is very weak for our two strong countries.

"We have the capacity to increase the trade volume with Poland to $10 billion in the next five years."

The Polish president agreed with Erdogan that the trade potential between the two countries could be much greater. "I strongly believe…we can reach $10 billion in the near future,” he said.

"We talked about both military cooperation, economic and cultural cooperation," Duda added.

Erdogan also said both sides had agreed to increase Turkish Airlines’ flights to Poland from the current five flights per week.

Duda said the Turkish president's visit to Warsaw was important, both economically and politically.

He said Poland supports Turkey's EU accession journey and he hoped the country would eventually get the bloc’s full membership.


More Polish investments urged

Later, both leaders attended a Polish-Turkish business forum.

At the forum, Erdogan reiterated that Turkey and Poland deserved a higher trade volume.

He cited defense, energy, finance, furniture, food and chemical sectors as areas where both sides could prioritize cooperation.

Erdogan mentioned that Turkey’s national income increased to $860 billion from $230 billion in 2002.

“In 2023, we aim to see Turkey’s national income reach $2 trillion, exports at $500 billion. We are working on this. And we are going to make our national income per capita $25,000," he said.

Erdogan also said Ankara will continue with its huge construction projects, including building Istanbul's third airport as part of its 2023 goals.

"We expect the business people of both countries to use their potential and create concrete projects,” he said, adding that Turkey would back the business communities in their endeavors.

He said Turkey wants to see more Polish investments and Polish tourists in Turkey.

Tourist arrivals in Turkey from Poland rose annually by over 33 percent to 204,834 in the first eight months of this year, according to Culture and Tourism Ministry data.

The trade volume has more than doubled over the last 10 years, shooting up from $2.49 billion in 2006 to nearly $6 billion in 2016, according to Economy Ministry data.

Bilateral trade is in favor of Poland, with Turkey’s exports to Poland standing at $1.9 billion while its imports from the country at more than $2.1 billion in January-September 2017, according to official data. Polish exports to Turkey hit a high of $3.24 billion last year, up from $1.43 billion in 2006, while Turkish exports stood at $2.65 billion, up from $1.06 billion in 2006.


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