Economy Minister Zeybekci says Turkey, the Netherlands can co-invest in construction sector in third countries

Turkish Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci said Tuesday that trade between Turkey and the Netherlands falls short of its potential, saying he hopes this can be corrected in the years to come.

On a two-nation tour to promote bilateral trade and joint investment projects in the wake of the July 15 defeated coup, Zeybekci met in Rotterdam with executives of Dutch companies, including Royal Dutch Shell, ING, FedEx, Rabobank, NN Group, Royal IHC, Fugro.

Saying Turkey is the number two country worldwide doing construction projects in other countries, he suggested, "Turkey and Netherlands can co-invest in the construction sector in third countries."

Accompanying Zeybekci on his visit are ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party MP Mehmet Mus, Republican People's Party (CHP) MP Riza Yalcinkaya, and Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) MP Arzu Erdem.

Zeybekci said that Dutch firms have invested 20 billion euros in Turkey since 2002, adding, “Turkey's investments in the Netherlands in the same period total some 11 billion euros."

Calling Turkey a land of opportunity with a huge potential for foreign investment, Zeybekci said, "For many centuries Turkey has been at the center of trade, regions, and cultures. Our country has the same importance in the current period."

He added, "Countries around us have faced problems for a while, but Turkey’s economy has maintained growth for 26 quarters. Our country has managed an average 5.3 percent growth rate in this period. We have created new employment for 6 million people since the global economic crisis."

From the Netherlands, Zeybekci will go to Italy on Wednesday to meet with Italian businesspeople on a two-day visit.

Trade between the Netherlands and Turkey has tripled over the past 10 years, and the Netherlands is one of Turkey’s main investors. Many Dutch companies have branches in Turkey doing business in foodstuffs, energy, and technology, for example.

The Netherlands’ top five exports to Turkey are metal ore, plastics in primary form, vehicles, petroleum/petroleum products, and organic chemicals. From Turkey, the Netherlands imports primarily clothing and accessories, vehicles, textile yarns and fabrics, fruit and vegetables, and iron and steel.

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