PM Erdoğan to meet heads of chambers

PM Erdoğan to meet heads of chambers

Jale Özgentürk ANKARA
PM Erdoğan to meet heads of chambers

TOBB head Hisarcıklıoğlu is expected to attend the summit.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is scheduled to meet with the heads of chambers of commerce and industry three days before the presidential elections on Aug. 10.

The Turkish Union of Chambers of Commodities Exchanges (TOBB) sent a letter to all chambers and called on its 500 members to make preparations for the council, which is scheduled to be held on Aug. 7.

During the meeting, the prime minister is expected to make a speech on Turkey’s economy as well as listen to complaints by senior officials at the chambers. Erdoğan will also be briefed about the B-20, a platform established by the TOBB, before the G-20 summit that will be held in Brisbane, Australia, on November 15 and 16.

The heads of chambers are now preparing to present their problems and solution proposals to the prime minister with one issue pointing to a decrease in Turkey’s trade volume with Iraq and Syria.

Exports to Iraq, Turkey’s second largest foreign market, fell by 19.3 percent to $745 million in June, according to data released last week by the Turkish Statistical Institute (Turkstat).

Nevertheless, Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci said his officials had calculated the expected trade loss with Iraq to be $2.5 billion, adding that it was a manageable level.

Turkey is aiming to increase its exports this year to $166.5 billion, up 10 percent from last year’s $151.8 billion, when it recorded a trade deficit of nearly $100 billion.

Erdoğan is hot favorite to win the upcoming Aug. 10 elections, which will see the first time a Turkish president elected by popular vote.