Turkey, Romania aim to increase trade volume up to $10bn
Presidents Erdogan and Iohannis agree to increase mutual trade volume from $6.3 billion up to $10 billion.

Turkey and Romania have agreed to increase mutual trade volume up to $10 billion in the near future, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Wednesday.

"The current trade volume is $6.3 billion. Our goal is to increase this initially up to $10 billion, and much higher once we reach the initial goal," Erdogan told a joint press conference in Bucharest with Romanian President Klaus Iohannis.

Erdogan said that even this figure is not enough considering the history of Turkish-Romanian economic ties spanning two decades.

"It is possible to increase this (trade volume) further. I believe our economic relations will be much stronger through a better cooperation between Turkish and Romanian investors both in respective countries, and in joint ventures in third countries," he said.

Iohannis said that Turkey was Romania's most important trade partner after the EU, and the fifth global trade partner.

"This partnership needs to be improved. Our goal in the near future is $10 billion. Once we reach this goal, we would like to aim for higher goals," he said, adding that the two countries could work together on joint projects in third markets, including Central Asia and the Caucasus.

Iohannis said another common goal was to increase the countries' operational capacities in NATO.

"It is important for us that Turkey join the (two international) NATO command and control centers (to be up and running by 2016) in Romania. I have submitted the invitation to Mr. Erdogan," he said.

The Turkish president said that cooperation between the two countries within NATO would continue "in a steadfast manner."

"As far as NATO's operational capacity and the command and control centers to be set up in Romania are concerned, I can say that we have a positive opinion on this matter, and the Turkish Foreign Ministry and armed forces are holding talks regarding the military support requested from Turkey by Romania," he said, adding that Iohannis would be promptly informed of Turkey's final decision on the issue.

When asked about the possibility of an underwater electricity transmission cable project between Romania and Turkey, Erdogan said: "This underwater cable project is not new. It is possible that Turkey might buy electricity from Bulgaria. We are having similar talks with Romania as well. Italy also has proposals on the subject. Energy ministers will meet to improve the projects further. Steps will be taken toward the most feasible project."

Erdogan also met with Romanian Prime Minister Victor Ponta, which saw the signing of multiple agreements between the two countries concerning cooperation in water affairs, forestry, meteorology and hydrology, in addition to a declaration to establish a joint economic and trade committee.

The two countries also signed a cooperation deal between The Anadolu Agency and Agerpres, the national news agency of Romania.

Last Modified: 2015-04-02 09:08:40
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