Ranked second after Chinese firms in the world, Turkish contracting companies have the government support to contribute to Ukrainian economic growth, development and increase the country's prosperity in its new investment initiative, Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan said yesterday at the Turkey-Ukraine Business Forum in Istanbul with the participation of Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelenskiy.
"Turkish construction firms have so far undertaken $5.9 billion in projects in Ukraine. The country is now on the brink of a new investment initiative. As the Turkish government, we will support Turkish firms for their contribution to the economic growth and development of Ukraine," she said.
Speaking of bilateral commercial relations, the trade minister explained that the trade volume between Turkey and Ukraine currently hovers at around $4.1 billion, and the two countries now aim to reach $10 billion in the initial phase, while working to remove any obstacles to improving bilateral relations.
Last year, Turkey's exports to Ukraine totaled $1.5 billion, while its imports from the fellow Black Sea country were $2.6 billion. In the first half this year, Turkish exports to Ukraine exceeded $750 million, while imports were $1.2 billion. The bilateral trade volume was $8 billion in 2008. In his address at the forum organized by the Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEİK), Zelenskiy stressed the willingness of Ukrainian businesspeople and politicians to cooperate with Turkey. He indicated that the Ukrainian government is planning a $20 billion investment in the country's infrastructure. "As part of the investment plan, 15 airports will be operational again, five seaports will be improved and some changes will be implemented in the defense industry. We plan to carry out these projects with public-private partnership programs," Zelenskiy said, inviting Turkish companies to invest.
Ukraine's Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chairman Gennadiy Chizhikov stressed that the two countries have great potential to grow and emphasized that a free trade agreement will benefit both countries. He also stressed that Ukraine offers many great opportunities for infrastructure projects and that the country values partnerships in third countries such as Iraq, Afghanistan and others in the region. "We need the experience of our Turkish partners in public-private partnership projects," Chizhikov said.
DEİK and the Ukrainian Chamber of Commerce and Industry signed a cooperation agreement at the forum.