Erdoğan says France visit to improve bilateral ties

Erdoğan says France visit to improve bilateral ties

Erdoğan says France visit to improve bilateral ties

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on Jan. 4 his upcoming visit to France would improve bilateral relations.

In an interview with French broadcaster LCI ahead of his one-day visit to Paris, Erdoğan said Turkey and France will “take important steps” on economy and politics.

“France and Turkey have many important steps to take politically, strategically and economically,” the Turkish president said.

Erdoğan, who is due to meet his French counterpart in Paris on Jan. 5, said his relationship with Macron had “a good start.”

“I will make my first visit to Europe [since the beginning of the year 2018] to [meet] my friend Emmanuel Macron,” said Erdoğan.

The two leaders have already met at international summits, but Friday marks Erdoğan’s first official visit to Paris since the election of the French president.

The Turkish president also noted that he had “excellent” contacts with former French presidents, including Jacques Chirac and Nicolas Sarkozy, during his 15 years in power.

 “Now with Mr. Macron, we are in a new era. We have had a good start with Mr. Macron when it comes to regional and bilateral issues,” Erdoğan said.

"The steps we have taken until now with Mr. Macron are all in the right direction and I have a lot of hopes in Mr. Macron, especially as we have trilateral cooperation among Turkey, France and Italy in the field of the defense industry,” he added.