Turkey, Bulgaria to resolve border issue
LEIPZIG - Hürriyet Daily News
Turkish Transport Minister Binali Yildirim (L) and his Bulgarian counterpart Kristian Krastev meet at an International Transport Forum of the OECD. AA photoTurkey’s Transport Minister Binali Yildirim and his Bulgarian counterpart Kristian Krastev have reached an understanding on key issues concerning their dispute over a series of blockages for trucks and other vehicles at major border checkpoints.
The two ministers met at an International Transport Forum of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) in Germany, where they agreed that Turkish and Bulgarian officials would meet on May 28 in Istanbul to discuss the problems and to find a solid solution.
“We discussed the problem, which is temporary, in detail. Both countries want to see the issue solved as soon as possible as Turkey and Bulgaria are friendly countries. We are committed to solving some technical problems and I see no reason why we would face further problems after both sides come together on May 28 in Turkey,” Yıldırım said.
Bulgarian truck drivers blocked the EU country’s two major border checkpoints with Turkey on May 17 for a second time in a week to protest about lengthy customs procedures on the Turkish side, state BNR radio reported.
The Bulgarian truckers’ boycott had been halted until May 31, awaiting the results of the negotiations, the Bulgarian officials announced via a written statement.
Bulgarian complaints about lengthy checks
The truckers had said Turkish customs authorities were subjecting them to lengthy checks and additional requirements in an attempt to eliminate them from the market.
“This is not a good European implementation,” Krastev said at the time, condemning Turkish regulations.
However, Turkish Customs Minister Hayati Yazıcı then said Turkey’s transportation regulations were compliant with international and EU standards, adding that the construction at the Kapitan Andreevo border gate, which is slated to be completed by the end of the year, was causing a reduction in capacity, prompting long queues in both directions.