MINSK – Turkey hopes for expanding business contacts with Belarus, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Turkey to Belarus Kezban Nilvana Darama told the media in Minsk on 13 July, BelTA has learned.
According to the diplomat, last year's visit of Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to Belarus started a new stage in Belarus-Turkey relations. “The visit was well received by the society and provoked positive discussions,” Ambassador Kezban Nilvana Darama said.
Speaking about Belarus-Turkey trade and economic cooperation, the ambassador remarked that Turkey's business in Belarus was more active in the past than now. She emphasized this is due not to Turkey's declining interest in Belarus but to the economic recession in many countries of the region and the world. The Turkish embassy also helps and consults Turkish companies that would like to invest in Belarus.
Ambassador Kezban Nilvana Darama announced a number of upcoming bilateral events, among them a session of the intergovernmental commission and a visit of Turkish business representatives.
“I think we will see positive momentum in business cooperation in the nearest future,” the ambassador emphasized.
She mentioned the telecom industry among the most important fields of cooperation. The total amount of investment in this sector now totals nearly $1.5 billion. Belarus' construction sector has also accumulated a large amount of Turkish investment. “We are working on new projects, too. They are coming soon,” Ambassador Kezban Nilvana Darama remarked.
According to her, Belarus and Turkey's goal is to increase trade up to $1 billion, which is now at $800 million. “Well-balanced development of bilateral trade is our goal. We are moving steadily towards this objective,” she added.
Ambassador Kezban Nilvana Darama recalled that 2017 marks the 25th anniversary of Belarus-Turkey diplomatic relations. This fact has a special meaning as Turkey was the first country to acknowledge Belarus' independence when the USSR disintegrated. “There have not been any problems in our relations over their 25-year history,” the ambassador pointed out.
She continued to speak about the political situation in Turkey and the fight against terrorism and extremism. “Your government and mass media have always supported constructive approach and have always been unbiased. We are grateful for it,” Ambassador Kezban Nilvana Darama stressed.
The Turkish ambassador sees great opportunities for strengthening cultural cooperation, too.
She said she has been studying Russian for eight months so far and has classes three times a week. The ambassador is also keen on the Belarusian language.