Invest News DetailTravel Daily News - The development of political, economic, cultural and tourism bonds between the UAE and Turkey will be further enhanced with the launch of Etihad Airways’ new flights to Istanbul from Monday, June 1. Etihad Airways, Abu Dhabi’s award-winning airline and the national carrier of the UAE, will launch its four-times-a-week service to Istanbul at a time when trade relations between the two countries is at its peak and set to grow significantly on the back of the new link. Turkey is one of the UAE’s largest trade partners, with USD 9 billion worth of annual bilateral trade volume that generates strong economic relations and sound business opportunities for both countries. According to last year’s foreign trade figures, Turkey is one of the UAE’s top ten largest suppliers, while over the past five years (2004-2008) the UAE’s exports to Turkey have increased six-fold. “Unprecedented growth has been seen in the bilateral trade between the UAE and Turkey, particularly in the past couple of years”, said the Turkish Ambassador to the UAE, His Excellency Hakki Akil. “Expansion of bilateral trade volume between the UAE and Turkey has increased ten-fold since 2003 and is a striking indicator of the strength in mutual dialogue between our countries. Etihad Airways’ launch into our bustling city of Istanbul will open up even more business and tourism opportunities.” Turkish companies are also boosting their efforts to enter the UAE market and forge strong connections with partners across a range of industries and sectors, including defense naval shipbuilding, real estate, yacht building, as well as construction materials.