The Kapıköy Customs Gate in the eastern province of Van, which has been modernized with an investment of TL 112 million with the aim of developing tourism and trade with Iran, with which Van has the longest border, will be contributing significantly to the regional economy.
The customs gate, the foundation of whose modernization was laid in the Saray district in Van over two years ago, was opened on March 19.
Bilateral trade between Turkey and Iran is poised to be increased with the Kapıköy Customs Gate; established by the Trade Ministry on an area of 70,000 square meters, it has all of the up-to-date equipment such as an x-ray scanning system, search hangar, a smuggled goods warehouse, luggage x-ray unit for passengers, camera systems, passenger hall and social reinforcement areas.
Thousands of Iranian tourists recently arrived in Van due to Iran's 13-day Nevruz holiday through the Kapıköy Customs Gate.
Expected to positively affect the economic and political relations between Turkey and Iran, the customs gate was also welcomed by the business circles in the region. Van Chamber of Commerce and Industry (TSO) Deputy Chairman Faruk Biner stressed the high importance of Kapıköy Customs Gate for Van as well as the region.
"... The modernization of the customs gate is very important for the commercial life of the region. Especially as our direction in foreign trade has turned toward the East and Asian countries, the fact that trade here will be made over Kapıköy and Van will create a great added value for both our city and our region. In this sense, we find the investment very important," Biner was quoted by Anadolu Agency (AA).
Noting that the Kapıköy Customs Gate was one of Turkey's most modern gates in terms of technological infrastructure and physical conditions, he indicated that while very little trade was made through Kapıköy until now, it will from now on make significant contributions to Van and Turkey by increasing the import and export scale.
"Iran is a very rich country in terms of underground resources. The world's fourth-largest oil producer, it is also an important country in terms of natural gas. We also want to benefit from those sources. We were aware that Iran will open to the world via Turkey. Our customs gate has become one of the most ideal transit points for them. For the last four years, Iranian tourists have made significant contributions to the economy of Van. Crossings this year have also started. We have a busy Iranian tourist crossing at our border gate. This has pleased our traders," said Biner.
On the other hand, Van Organized Industrial Zone (OSB) Chairman of the Board Mehmet Aslan has also stressed that the completion of the modernization of the customs gate and its capacity increase is very important in terms of foreign trade. Iranian tourists are now welcomed with a much more comfortable and safe crossing, Aslan told AA. "We have come to a point at which a thousand vehicles can make the crossing through our customs gate that has retrieved international outlook and is equipped with the latest technology. Our members dealing with trade are very happy with this investment. We expect it to contribute significantly to imports and exports once Iran improves the physical and road conditions at the crossing."
He also remarked that they want to establish a joint industrial zone with Iran in Van for the development of bilateral trade between the two countries.
"We are planning to move cheap raw materials and energy resources in Iran to Van. In a common industrial zone to be established in Van, we aim to commercialize raw materials and oil resources we will bring from Iran to the world by converting them into a Turkish brand. In this respect, modernization at the customs gate will contribute not only to Van but also to the economy of the two countries," Aslan said.