Turkey and a number of African countries have signed a joint declaration with a view to improving partnership for development and economic integration.
According to the declaration, the Turkey-Africa Economy and Business Forum emphasized diversifying Turkey-Africa partnerships.
The two-day forum, which began Wednesday in Istanbul, brought together 3,000 African and Turkish businesspeople.
The forum was organized by Turkey's Trade Ministry and the African Union in coordination with Turkey's Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEİK).
The Turkish side showed its willingness to further strengthen the economic and commercial ties with African countries, the declaration said.
The next forum will be held in 2020, it added.
The declaration recommended the launch of a joint action plan to examine the possibilities of removing tariffs and obstacles to trade while protecting the "sensitive sectors" in African countries. The private sector's activities on both sides should be supported in order to foster mutual investment and trade, it said.
Turkey and the African Union decided to form a partnership in design, inspection, financing and management of projects to reduce energy costs and increase access to electricity, drop transport costs, boost intra-African trade, ensure water and food security and increase global connectivity.
It added that the participating countries will take the necessary measures to encourage Turkish and African enterprises as well as financial institutions to expand investment and participate in infrastructure projects through various means, like Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) and Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) models.
Mutual investments to build more diversified economies in Turkey and in Africa will also be encouraged, it said.
The declaration noted that the private sector's investments in areas like agriculture, electricity production, transmission and delivery facilities, aviation, maritime, education and health were prioritized for the development of small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs).
The declaration called on Turkish and African financial institutions to enhance cooperation, including opening more branches in their respective countries.
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