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Turkish-Iraqi talks on developing economic relations

08-07-2020 | admin

Iraqi Planning Minister Khaled Batal al-Najm discussed tuesday with Turkish Ambassador to Baghdad Fateh Yildiz "bilateral relations in the economic and investment fields and ways to develop them."

He made the announcement during a meeting at the ministry's headquarters in Baghdad, according to a statement issued by the Iraqi Ministry of Planning.

"The relationship between the two countries is based on historical depth and great interdependence between the two peoples, reinforced by common interests in the investment, tourism, medicine, housing and other sectors," the statement quoted The Star as saying.

The statement said the two sides discussed a number of files, including "the Turkish government's $5 billion loan to Iraq, as well as the reconstruction project of Mosul airport in the north."

The two sides also discussed "providing electricity through the electricity connection between Iraq and Turkey, as well as the second border crossing project (between the two countries), water infrastructure projects and the construction of a number of hospitals in Iraq implemented by Turkish companies," he said.

For his part, the Turkish ambassador expressed his government's keenness to "strengthen joint cooperation between the two countries in the interests of common interests".

"The development of relations has had a positive impact on the volume of trade and the increase in the volume of joint investments," Yildiz said.

"Iraq's well-being and prosperity is one of Turkey's prosperity, and Turkish companies are ready to contribute to the implementation of the large port project in southern Iraq," the statement said.

In February, Yildiz revealed that trade between Turkey and Iraq rose to $15.8 billion in 2019 from $13 billion in 2018, noting that the two countries aim to increase trade volume to $20 billion.

Trade between the two countries declined following ISIS's control of one-third of Iraq in 2014.

Iraq regained its entire territory from ISIS control in 2017, as trade between Iraq and Turkey began to gradually recover.

Most of the trade between the two countries is conducted through two border crossings located in The Dohuk governorate of northern Iraqi Kurdistan province, Ibrahim Al-Khalil-Veshkhapur and Serza-Uzumlu.

Oil is being transported through a pipeline running from the Kurdistan region of northern Iraq to the Turkish Mediterranean port of Ceyhan, and hundreds of Turkish companies are engaged in investment projects across Iraq.