Turkish Trade Minister Omer Polat said on Sunday that the share of Islamic countries in Turkish exports rose to 26% from 11% in 2002.
Polat added – in his speech at the Turkish Gulf Economic Forum in Istanbul – that his country aims to raise this rate to 35% after 5 years.
He also stated that the main focus of his ministry is to keep the Turkish market open, expand and diversify the volume of exports, and make the country an attractive center for investments.
Polat pointed out that he realizes “the great potential of the Gulf region, one of Turkey’s most important trading partners,” pointing out that this region has great geopolitical importance, as it is located at the crossroads of maritime trade routes between Asia, Europe and Africa.
He added that the volume of bilateral trade with the Gulf countries increased significantly from $2.1 billion in 2002 to $22.7 billion last year.
The Minister of Trade indicated that with these numbers, Turkey has become the ninth largest supplier to the Gulf Cooperation Council countries in 2022.
He expressed Turkey’s readiness to make every effort to ensure a balanced increase in the volume of bilateral trade and achieve a sustainable trade relationship.
The minister explained that his country’s exports to Arab countries increased by 15% last year compared to 2021, and reached $46 billion, while imports increased by 31% to reach $36 billion.
As for relations with the countries of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Polat said that the volume of Turkish exports increased from 4.7 billion dollars in 2002 to 65 billion last year.
The Minister of Economy confirmed that Turkey has developed a new strategy to increase the volume of trade in line with the intensification of bilateral relations with the Islamic world, including the Gulf countries.