Trade with Russia should reach $100B: official
Trade between Turkey and Russia should reach $100 billion target of the countries’ leaders “as soon as possible,” Turkey’s trade minister said on July 26. The value of bilateral trade has dropped from $33.3 billion in 2012 to $25.7 billion in 2018, Ruhsar Pekcan told the Turkey-Russia Economic Councils’ 20th Joint Meeting in the Mediterranean resort city of Antalya.
Turkey’s exports to the country
totaled $3.4 billion, while its imports were $22.3 billion, Pekcan said, underlining that trade between the countries should be balanced. “There is serious potential [between Russia and Turkey], the governments are ready to provide all support to businesspeople,” she said. Russia imports household appliances, freezers, construction materials, furniture, ready-made clothes, and medicine from the world, Pekcan underlined. “Turkey exports all of these products to the world at the most competitive prices.”
Urging the use of local currencies to boost trade, she noted that Russia makes 12 percent of its exports and 0.5 percent of its imports this way. “We expect Russia to contribute to growing trade through local currencies,” she noted. The two countries’ bilateral investments are currently around $20 billion, she added, stressing that there is a large potential in this area as well.
Lauding Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to lift visa requirements for Turkish holders of certain passports, Pekcan called for a return to the visa-free regime of 2015.
For his part, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said trade between Turkey and Russia in the first five months of 2019 totaled $10 billion. There is a greater potential between the two countries, which enjoy good relations, he added. But their bilateral investment of $20 billion falls short, he noted.