Turkish transporters offer Greece 400 million euros per year through transit trade
by Daily Sabah with AA
ISTANBULJul 07, 2015 - 12:00 am GMT+3
by Daily Sabah with AA
Jul 07, 2015 12:00 am
The International Transporters Association (UND) of Turkey called on crisis-hit Greece to cooperate with Turkish transporters to enlarge its transit land trade capacity that would contribute an annual 400 million euros to the cash-stripped country's economy.
Under the slogan "Let's Create a New Silk Road," the UND urged the Greek government to facilitate and ease the procedures of transit trade with Turkey through a statement published on its website.
"Each day, 750 trucks can pass from Turkey to Bulgaria, while this number is 150 to 200 trucks for Greece. Turkey employs 136 people at the İpsala Border Gate with Greece, while 31 people work on Greece's side. Bulgaria has annual income of 350 to 400 million euros from Turkey's export transportation and transit passages. Greece can make this money too," Fatih Şener, UND's Chairman of the Executive Board, said. "Bulgaria, with an approximate 400,000 vehicle traffic per year, is a good example in that regard, and modelling after Bulgaria would provide an important income for Greece."
Şener said that not only Greece, but also Turkey can make important gains through this cooperation. Many trade routes are being redrawn between Europe and Asia, Şener said, stating that Turkey is included in some of these routes while Greece is not included into these new routes, spanning to China.
Şener said that Greece has recently revoked the invitation requirement for truck drivers in visa applications through negotiations. "These are nice developments but if the capacity of the İpsala Border Gate is increased and trucks can pass without obstacles, traffic bound to Europe could pass from Greece, and then use Ro-Ro ships in the Adriatic to Italy."
Pointing to Turkey's $92 billion trade volume from Aegean ports, Şener said that easing the transit passage conditions and enabling Ro-Ro lines to be established for ports like Thessaloniki and Lavrion would seriously reduce logistics costs, while providing a source of income for these areas and means of fast transport for Greek commodities.
Turkey's exports to Greece are worth around $1.5 billion, while importing $4 billion worth of goods from Greece.