On a six-day visit to Turkey, Indian Vice President, Hamid Ansari, met with senior level Turkish diplomats as well as President Abdullah Gul. Speaking on the prospects of bi-lateral cooperation in various areas, Vice President Ansari said, “[Turkey’s] economy is doing very well. Our economy is doing very well. The time is right to take our relationship to the next level.” Turkey’s con-
struction industry is second only to China’s and commands great expertise in infrastructure, an area that India could greatly benefit from. Talks also focused on India assisting Turkey with IT expertise. Apart from technological cooperation, representatives from both countries also discussed the serious threat of terrorism and expressed the commitment to work together not only on a national but also regional and international level. Both countries already have a Joint Group exchanging information and strategies to address issues of terrorism that plague both nations.
The possibility of a free trade agreement to bolster trade between the two countries was also discussed. The bilateral trade volume that heavily favors India jumped from $2.3 billion in 2009 to $4 billion in 2010. Seniorlevel contact between India and Turkey has also seen heightened frequency with delegates from both sides making frequent visits and holding talks in order to increase mutual understanding and enhance economic and social cooperation.