French invasion?

Dünya Executive - - COVER PAGE - TAMER ISITIR

French authoritie­s say Turkey is still a prime target for invesment. But they wait for the elections

Business France has released the 2017 edition of the ‘The Internatio­nal Developmen­t of the French Economy.’ Evaluating the Turkish-French trade relations figures of the report for daily DUNYA, President of the CCE (French Foreign Advisors), Xavier Guilmineau, said that no French investors have left Turkey since he took this position 1.5 years ago. “Being the 6th largest economy in Europe and 16th in the world, Turkey has a special position for France,” he said. “French companies with a strong desire to go global certainly want to be in Turkey.”

Guilmineau added that, despite concerns over the devaluatio­n of the Turkish lira and exchange rates, many investment­s are waiting at the door for the post-election period and a large number of French investors are preparing to make purchases in Turkey this year. “Turkey was attractive 10 years ago, it still is,” said Guilmineau, emphasizin­g that bilateral relations should also develop in the economic domain. The total trade volume between the two countries in 2017 was 14 billion euros and they aim is to reach 20 billion euros in 2020, he said.

Macron: Turkey s our natural partner

French Embassy Commercial Counsellor and Business Finance Turkey Country Manager, Pascal Lecamp, addressing Turkey’s EU membership process and the viewpoint of the French President Emmanuel Macron, said, “Turkey cannot escape from the EU, the EU cannot ignore Turkey. Turkey’s position is important also for Macron. He says that Turkey is a natural partner for France.” The expansion of talks between the two countries is a sign of this, according to Lecamp. “For example, we were not able to do animal trade between

Turkey and France but this is now happening,” he said. “The increase in communicat­ion and dialogue has been instrument­al in such positive developmen­ts. Potential animal trade volume between the two countries is 500 million euros. We can reach the 20 billion euros trade target we set for 2020 in under-developed areas such as these.”

By the numbers

According to by Business France’s report, there are 100 Turkish companies in France while the number of French companies operating in Turkey is 500. 7 Turkish companies invested in France in 2017, generat-

ing employment for 1,500 French citizens. By comparison, the contributi­on of French companies to employment in Turkey amounts to 100,000. Turkey ranks 12th in terms of French exports, at 6.7 billion euros. The export figures of Turkey to France is 7.5 billion euros. According to the Central Bank of France, Turkey ranks 45th among countries investing in France with foreign direct investment in the range of 250 million euros. “Turkey has a qualified workforce and it is close to European countries,” French officials said. Companies in both countries should utilize this advantage.

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