Mr The Turkish Exporters Assembly (TIM) on Wednesday expressed optimism that trade transactions between Turkey and Nigeria would reach about N360 billion(about $1billion) in the short-term by 2020.
The Assembly’s International Trade Manager, Mr Abdullah Keskin, told the News Agency of Nigeria(NAN) in Lagos that Turkey would, within the period, increase her trade relations with Nigeria.
Keskin, who led a Turkish Trade Delegation to Lagos, said that the delegation was visiting to promote stronger economic ties with Nigeria, as well as diversify its investment to Nigeria.
“Nigeria is one of Turkey’s very important trade partner in West Africa. Turkey’s trade volume with Nigeria currently amounts to nearly about 25 per cent of Turkey’s total trade with countries in the ECOWAS sub-region.
“In 2017, trade volume between our two countries was about 490 million dollars. Our bilateral trade has not been as expected in the previous years.
“We really want to see more trade transaction between our two countries. We are, therefore, hopeful that our trade volume will climb to about one billion US dollars in the short-term by 2020,’’ he said.
Keskin said that the assembly was prepared to promote the export of Turkish products in Nigeria, as well as create the appropriate market for Nigerian products in Turkey.
He said that the delegation was a follow-up to the Turkish President Recep Erdogan’s policy of opening up to African countries since 2006.
The Assembly’s International trade manager expressed optimism that the visit would foster more mutually beneficial business cooperation between Turkish entrepreneurs and their Nigerian counterparts soon.
“We represent 71, 000 exporters, importers and foreign investors. Today, we have come to Lagos for a purpose.
“We have travelled more than 7, 000 kilometres to Lagos with the aim of taking our trade relations to a higher level.
“We strongly believe that the Nigerian business people will take advantage of this visit, and build long lasting Commercial ties with their visiting Turkish counterparts,’’ he said.
Keskin said that the assembly was established in 1993 to determine issues relating to export, conduct improvement activities, as well as communicate exporters problems to Turkish authorities.
He said that a Memorandum of Understanding(MoU) would be signed between the Turkish Exporters Assembly and the Lagos State Chamber of Commerce and Industry to enhance existing trade relations between Nigeria and Turkey.
Nigeria is Turkey’s largest business partner in sub-Saharan Africa.