Sabah/AA – On a visit to the capital of the USA to attend the Nuclear Security Summit, Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan met President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State John Kerry as well CEOs and chairpersons of leading multinational companies with total annual turnover of USD 2 trillion.
In an event organized jointly by the Investment Support and Promotion Agency of Turkey (ISPAT), Turkey's Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEİK) and Turkish-American Business Council in Washington D.C.’s Andrew Mellon Auditorium, President Erdoğan addressed an audience of 500 business people from Turkey and the US after which a gala dinner was held.
President Erdoğan, accompanied by Turkey’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, Minister of Economy Mustafa Elitaş, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Berat Albayrak, President of ISPAT Arda Ermut and Turkish Airlines CEO İlker Aycı, held a roundtable meeting with the executives of leading international companies. The attendees of the roundtable meeting included the top executives of Coca-Cola, Lockheed, Dow Chemical, Boeing, Citibank, Honeywell, Baxalta, Boston Scientific, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Pratt&Whitney, Baker McKenzie, General Electric, Westinghouse and Raytheon.
In separate one-to-one meetings organized by ISPAT, President Erdoğan received the CEOs of a limited number of US companies with ongoing investment projects in Turkey.
In his speech before the dinner President Erdoğan highlighted Turkey’s advantages as an investment destination, stating that the country was considered a priority growth market and the US investors’ interest in the country was not at the desired level.
“I expect all investors to carefully assess Turkey’s advantages. International investors in Turkey never face any hurdles with their profits and are free to transfer profits as they please. No international investor regrets investing in Turkey”, he said, calling on to businesspeople on both sides to do more to increase trade and investments.
“The regional problems would never deter Turkey’s steady progress towards its targets,” Erdoğan noted, adding that a timely entry into a growing market with a multitude of opportunities would bring great gains in medium and long term. “Now is the right time to invest in Turkey,” he said.
“While we see increased interest from US companies in recent years, investments from US to Turkey are far from reflecting our true potential. With its high performing economy and political stability, Turkey is one of the most important investment destinations in its region and the world”, he noted.
Speaking of Turkey strong economic performance in the last 13 years, Erdoğan said that the country had attracted foreign direct investments totaling USD 165 billion, while tripling its GDP and creating jobs for millions. “Turkey also serves as a regional management center for several multinational companies and organizations,” he said.
ISPAT President Arda Ermut, also a speaker in the event, underlined that the number of US companies operating in Turkey had reached 1,600 with an investment total of USD 12 billion. “We are committed to raise these figures to new highs”, ISPAT President said.