By Temitope Ponle
Turkish Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Hakan Çakil, says the trade value between Nigeria and Turkey is expected to exceed one billion dollars by the end of the year.
Çakil said this in Abuja at the occassion to mark the 93rd anniversary of the founding of Turkey.
He said that at present the trade value in the first seven months of 2016 stood at 600 million dollars.
“In the first seven months of this year, we have exceeded 600 million dollar of total trade volume; this means that by the end of this year we will exceed one billion dollars.
“We have the trade figure up till July for the time being.
“Compared with 2014, the trade value is less and the reason is not the decrease in quantity but the decrease in oil and gas prices.
“In 2014 the total trade volume was 2.5 billion dollars, while in 2015 it was 1.2 billion dollars.
“This does not mean that trade is decreasing, the volume is still the same but because of the decrease in oil and gas prices, we pay less, “ he said.
He added that approximately 70 Turkish companies operated in Nigeria and that other imports from Nigeria to Turkey included crude oil, palm oil and sesame oil.
He said Nigeria was one of Turkey’s most important providers of natural gas adding that they import lots of LNG from Nigeria. “
The envoy also said that the forthcoming Turkey-Africa Economic and Business Forum (TABEF 2016) would explore various economic opportunities and promote economic relations between Turkey and African nations.
The forum would be held in Istanbul from Nov. 2 to 3.
“Between Nov. 2 and 3, there will be a Turkey-Africa Business Economic Forum in Turkey and the Nigerian delegation will be one of the largest.
“Approximately 90 participants from Nigeria will be in attendance, every sub-Saharan country is attending with official and private committees.
“We talked with the Nigerian authorities, I personally requested and we are expecting two official delegations from Nigeria.
“One from the Ministry of Trade and Investment and the second from Nigeria Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC).
“NIPC will promote the direct foreign investment opportunities of Nigeria to Turkish businessmen and the delegation of the ministry will promote the economic facilities of Nigeria,” he said.
TABEF 2016 is organised to foster trade relations between Turkey and African countries, by providing unique occasions to delegates in building networks and creating new business opportunities.
The forum would have more than 5,000 African and Turkish business people in participation.
The Theme of the Forum is “Financing African Investment Projects: Infrastructure, Transportation and Energy. “