European dependency was wrong: Minister

European dependency was wrong: Minister

ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
European dependency was wrong: Minister

Turkey has lifted its trade focus on Europe which has enabled $44 billion export surplus but it should have been done that earlier, the economy minister says.

Turkey’s commercial approach, which has been facing Europe, was the wrong configuration, Turkish Economy Minister Zafer Çağlayan has said.

“The world’s axes have shifted while Turkey’s axis was already misconfigured. If we waited for the European Union, how could we discuss $152.6 billion worth of exports,” he said during a meeting with industry sector reporters.

Turkey has expanded its trade destinations’ variety as it has been exporting to 243 trade zones raising a $44 billion export revenue surplus for four years, Çağlayan said. “Now, there are only two countries we don’t export to and they are the Republic of Naura and Micronesia Federal States.”

The minister, who also stated Turkey’s firm commitment to reducing the current account deficit during his speech, said the government had being putting great weight on strategic investments to realize this goal.

The Turkish government has been promoting local investments and production both in key industries and sub-industries. The development of local products, particularly national cars, will be prestigious for Turkey, but more importantly it will eliminate the import dependency of side sections, the minister said.

In his remarks on import dependency, Çağlayan also mentioned electric car production, which is very important for Turkey due to the necessity of developing sustainable solutions independent from energy resources like oil and gas. But, he said, the important thing is not to produce cars but to produce the battery technology locally, which is worth almost the same as the car itself. He said batteries would also be used in aerospace industries.

The minister said he would have talks with Volkswagen managers to invite the company to invest in Turkey, where its models are top sellers, after Volkswagen’s recent announcement about investment countries that didn’t include Turkey.