2/27/2008

Turkey seeks investment from Gulf states in 4 key sectors

Khaleej Times - Turkey is seeking increasing investment from the Gulf States in four key sectors — energy, infrastructure, tourism and real estate — Turkey's Minister of Economy, Mehmet Simsek, said in Dubai. He was on a three-country tour of the region, including Qatar and Kuwait, to convince GCC countries to "invest their surplus savings" in Turkey and advocated it as a good place for investors "to diversify their assets". He said here was a "lot of synergy between Turkey and the UAE, Qatar, Oman and Saudi Arabia". "We want to tell investors the outlook for Turkey and the opportunities," he said, adding: "We are convinced that Turkey can sustain 6 to 7 per cent GDP growth on an annual basis over the next few years." The fact that Turkey has the sixth largest economy in Europe, strong GDP growth (which averaged 7.4 per cent between 2002 and 2006), high and rising productivity, a stable economy and an effective structural reform process means that investors will get a good return on their investments, he said. "We offer good return on equity," he added. And on Turkey's quest for membership of the European Union he said he was "very confident" that Turkey would join Europe. "Europe needs Turkey and Turkey needs Europe," he said, adding: "That it was a win-situation for everyone. Turkey can also use the process to put our house in order." The volume of trade between the UAE and Turkey grew by 400 per cent in the past five years, according to figures available at the end of 2007. Turkey now accounts for two per cent of the UAE's total foreign trade, which includes trade through free zones. In the past two years, the volume of mutual investment has touched $2.5 billion.