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Jeddah - Yasmine El Tohamy - RIYADH: Turkiye is planning to increase its investment in Kuwait to $5 billion in a move aimed at strengthening economic cooperation and fostering higher bilateral trade, according to a senior minister.
Turkish Minister of Trade Omer Bolat made the announcement during a press conference on Nov. 7, underscoring his government’s commitment to expanding economic ties and mutual growth with the Gulf nation, reported the Kuwait News Agency.
The minister underlined Kuwait’s pivotal role as an economic, financial, and oil powerhouse in the Middle East.
He also emphasized Turkiye’s commitment to increasing oil imports from Kuwait and enhancing bilateral procurement, highlighting the substantial opportunities for cooperation between the two nations.
The event coincided with the launch of the Commercial Authority program at the Turkish Embassy in Kuwait.
This expansion encompasses a wide range of products, spanning from clothing and automotive spare parts to iron and steel goods, defense projects, and various other items, all aimed at facilitating both sides in reaching this number of trade exchanges in the near future.
Commending the two states’ commercial relations, the minister further said that Kuwait’s investment in Turkiye constitutes the backbone of the economic ties between the two parties.
Bolat stated that Kuwait has an economic vision for 2035, including several key initiatives, notably a large port, a vast free zone, and various development projects.
Commenting on his country’s ties with Muslim states, the Turkish minister stressed that Turkiye is working on enhancing relations with those countries while ensuring more economic integration with African countries. He further said that Arab and Islamic investment in his country amounted to $50 billion out of $285 billion in Turkiye.
As for the foreign investment in his country, Bolat noted that there are now 85,000 international companies engaged in direct investments in Turkiye, adding that this is a significant increase compared to approximately 5,000 nearly two decades ago.
Addressing another growing sector, he said: “About 20 years ago, the annual number of tourists was 12 million, and I hope that tourists coming to Turkiye would reach up to 56 million. Tourism revenue is expected between $55 and $56 billion.”
For his part, Kuwait’s Minister of Trade and Industry and Minister of State for Youth Affairs Mohammad Al-Aiban shed light on the growth in the volume of business exchange between Kuwait and Turkiye in 2022, noting that the trade volume reached approximately $1.06 billion, marking a substantial increase of 32.9 percent compared to the previous year.
The Kuwaiti minister emphasized the positive trajectory of their relationship, attributing it to the expanding economy, trade, and investment ties between the two countries.
Al-Aiban stressed the government’s focus on the private sector, seen as a key driver of economic growth. “The government is eager to attract foreign investors, allowing them to benefit from the incentives provided by the Kuwait Direct Investment Promotion Authority,” he said.
The minister pointed out various challenges, such as global political stability, food security, climate change, and commitments to sustainable green development, necessitating increased efforts and dedication in collaboration between Kuwait and Turkiye.
“We realize that there are many investment opportunities available between the two countries that require strengthening joint efforts to achieve them, and we are here today to exchange ideas, experiences and expertise,” he said.
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