Turkish international aid reaches Vanuatu
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily NewsVanuatu, a distant island country in the Pacific Ocean, has recently become the latest destination to be reached by Turkey’s international aid through the Prime Ministry’s Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TİKA).
TİKA’s Deputy President Harun Tuncer declared that by reaching out to Vanuatu, TİKA had now managed to reach the fifth continent of influence, as it is to provide computers and equipment to the island country to enhance its technical and information infrastructure, the Anatolia news agency reported yesterday.
“On one hand, we are building cooperation with Latin America, on the other, we have reached the Pacific islands in the very Far East,” Tuncer said, emphasizing the vast area of influence they had attained over the years.
As a part of its desire to become an influential international actor, in the last few years Turkey has reached out to different regions in need, to bolster its foreign policy through the soft power of international aid. TİKA has played a key role in these efforts, being the central institution in coordinating humanitarian efforts by civil society organizations.
Call to the Prime Minister
Tuncer recalled Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s promise to grant the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) $200 million, verbalized at the UN Conference on LDCs, hosted in Istanbul in 2011. In 2012, Turkey’s international support has reached over $2.3 billion.
“Development cooperation activities are actually the soft side of foreign policy and are a very important subtle power instrument. We support this vision, the opening up of Turkey through development cooperation,” he said, underlining that, despite their size, Pacific islands have the same weight while voting in int’l platforms as large countries, hinting that supporting them would empower Turkey in foreign policy bargains.