LONDON, (The Southern African Times) – Turkey is committed to boosting trade ties with the entire African continent and will hold a Turkey-Africa Business Council meeting very soon, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who is visiting Angola as part of his three-nation tour to the continent, has said.
Turkey’s trade with all African countries is worth around $25 billion and Turkey is hoping to increase it, Erdoğan stated.
“Our trade volume with Angola in the first eight months of this year was recorded as $132 million. We should exert mutual efforts to increase it to $500 million as we had agreed on,” Erdoğan said at a press conference with Angola President João Manuel Gonçalves Lourenço in Luanda on Oct. 18.
The two presidents held a joint press conference after they attended the Turkey-Angola Business Forum meeting where Erdoğan addressed businesspeople from the two countries.
Turkey will hold the Turkey-Africa Business Council meeting in Istanbul on Oct. 21 and 22 and later the Turkey-Africa Partnership Summit, Erdoğan stated. “We are pursuing a holistic policy that stipulates a win-win approach with African countries and solving the problems of Africa by the African nations.”
Erdoğan informed that he discussed with Lourenço the cooperation in the field of the defense industry and fight against terrorism, saying that recent developments in bilateral ties were satisfactory.
Turkey and Angola will provide necessary conditions for the two sides’ businesspeople to come together and discuss potential investments in the wide range of fields including transportation, health, agriculture, textile and construction, Erdoğan said.
“The fact that we have already taken some concrete steps to this end shows our determination in strengthening our bilateral relationship,” he stated. Turkey and Angola will soon sign a deal on health at a time when the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has shown the importance global solidarity and cooperation, he said.
The two countries are also discussing visa liberalization, the president informed, stressing Angola has no objection to this move which could increase human mobility between the two nations. “With the Turkish Airlines’ launch of direct flights between Luanda and Istanbul, the journey takes 7.5 hours non-stop,” Erdoğan stated.
Turkey is not conservative in selling defense industry equipment and can cooperate with Angola, Erdoğan said, informing that Angola demanded to procure armed and unarmed drones from Turkey and they now seek to buy armored vehicles from Turkey.
Erdoğan will visit Nigeria and Togo after Angola.