12/24/2008

Turkey reaches out to Syria

Dunya / AA - During his talks in Syria including Turkish banking sector representatives, the Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Nazim Ekren over the weekend met with Syrian Prime Minister Naci Otri and his Syrian counterpart Abdallah Dardari. Ekren's talks mainly focused on the economic and financial cooperation with Syria. In view of the strong will of the Turkish and Syrian leaders, bilateral economic ties should be strengthened, Ekren said. The Turkish minister also stated that Turkey and Syria reached a decision in principle to share information about public management, financial discipline, budget management, transparency and taxation, and defined opening a branch of a Turkish bank in Syria as an important step. He also stressed the importance of better regional economic cooperation to help weather the global economic crisis. For his part, Otri said that they reached agreements on many issues after talks with Turkish bank officials ahead of a Turkish-Syrian joint economic commission meeting. Dardari noted that economic and technical cooperation would be launched soon between the Turkish International Cooperation and Development Agency (TIKA) and the Syrian Planning Institution.

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