Turkey's ambassador to the African Union announced that Ankara is planning on opening five embassies in the African countries.
In a well-attended speech at Addis Ababa University on Monday, Fatih Ulusoy said new embassies are set to open in the Central African Republic, Equatorial Guinea, Burundi, Sierra Leone and Liberia. In his lecture "Turkey in Africa: Drivers and Incentives of an Emerging Power," Ulusoy said this would bring the total number of Turkish missions on the continent to 44.
The ambassador also spoke on Turkish-Ethiopian relations, saying that there are currently 165 Turkish companies operating in Ethiopia.
"These companies create jobs for 30,000 Ethiopians," he said, explaining that Turkish investment in Ethiopia stands at nearly $3 billion, accounting for about half of Turkey's total investment in sub-Saharan Africa.
Turkey has the sixth-largest diplomatic network in the world following the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council (UNSC), according to an international global diplomacy index last year. The index published by the Australia-based Lowy Institute for International Policy showed that Turkey follows the U.S., Russia, China, the U.K. and France in the number of diplomatic missions.
According to figures compiled by Anadolu Agency (AA), the country currently has 235 foreign missions, including both embassies and consulates. In 2002, when the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) came to power, the number of diplomatic missions abroad stood at 163.
Under Turkey's active foreign police, 72 new missions opened in the past 14 years. Furthermore, according to Foreign Ministry sources, 24 new missions are in the pipeline and are expected to open soon.The Lowy Diplomacy Index 2016 puts the United States at the top of the list, with 270 foreign missions, followed by France with 267, China with 258, Russia with 243 and the United Kingdom with 236.
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