Science, Technology and Industry Minister Faruk Özlü told media members yesterday that Turkey and Hungary aim to increase their trade volume up to $5 billion and that the two countries are close to achieving the goal. Speaking at a joint press conference held with Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó after the 5th Session of the Turkey-Hungary Joint Economic Commission meeting yesterday, Minister Özlü stated that the trade and economic relations between the two countries have gained momentum in the recent period. "Our exports to Hungary in 2016 increased by 17 percent, up $832 million compared to the previous year. Our import rate from Hungary compared to the previous year is at $1.3 billion," Özlü added.
Reiterating that Turkey is urging the European Union to update the customs union agreement while accelerating negotiations toward EU membership, Minister Özlü told the media members that Hungary is in favor of Turkey's membership as well as the update on the customs union. Agreeing with Özlü, Hungarian Minister Szijj also claimed that Turkey's economy is getting stronger by the day. As a result, he stressed that the EU must further enhance its cooperation with Turkey and added that "hypocrisy and inappropriate political behavior would only estrange Turkey from the EU." Parallel to Minister Özlü, the Hungarian minister also stressed that trade volume must be increased to $5 billion, as he explained that a nine-article suggestion list was presented on his behalf to the Turkish minister. "We look forward to Turkish investors in Hungary. We have also told Minister [Özlü] that we will provide them with significant amounts of possible funding," Szijj added.
Bilateral trade volume between Turkey and Hungary stood at $2.02 billion in 2015. Turkey's exports reached $712 million, while its imports amounted to $1.31 billion in the same year. Turkey exports machinery, iron and steel products, electronic devices, textile and foodstuffs to Hungary, while importing electronic devices, machinery, automotive subsidiary industry products and chemical products.
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