(MENAFN - The Journal Of Turkish Weekly) Turkish Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci said that Turkey aims to strengtheneconomic relations withSerbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina as soon as possible.
Speaking in an exclusive interview withAnadolu Agency in the Serbian capitalBelgrade on MondayZeybekci said:"Turkey has had free trade agreements with both Serbia and Bosnia-Herzegovina for more than 10 years. However we have not reached the point that we seek. These agreements need renewal. We agree on this issues. Moreover we want to unite with Serbia and Bosnia in a council of representatives to discuss further economic cooperation.We aim to unite these three countries in common economic interests to raise the trade volume" Zeybekci said. Turkey Serbia and Bosnia-Herzegovinasigned a Medium Term (2016-2018) Program and Action Plan in Belgrade on Monday. According to the deal a council of representatives from the three countries will be established and they will hold meetings every month to discuss further economic cooperation. Zeybekci also urged the representatives of the three countries to improve the mutual free trade agreements as soon as possible. "Improving the free trade agreements mean having the most liberal and the most comprehensive free trade agreements in the region" he said. "Serbia and Bosnia are very important economic partners of Turkey. They are countries with huge capacities in the areas of agriculture energy and tourism and also offer opportunities for Turkish banks to take an important role in banking sectors" said Zeybekci. Turkish lender Halkbank one of the country's biggest banks and a state-run bank on Monday opened its first branch in Belgrade. Speaking of current bloody terrorist attacks in Turkey Zeybekci said that these attacks were planned to hit the heart of the country. "After Turkey paid its debt to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) started building the largest airport in the world "Kanal Istanbul"nuclear plants bridges over Marmara sea projects at Canakkale high-speed trainsinfrastructure andsuperstructure constructions all aroundTurkey and tooka role in the reshaping of the worldthe same kind of people responsible forterrorist attacks in the history of Turkey madethe recentones such as the Ankara bombing" Zeybekci said. Zeybekci saidthat those who carryout the terrorist attacks want to keep Turkey busy with internal problemsto prevent it from formingstrong ties with other countriessuch as with nations in theBalkans and the Middle East. "This is the reason for all of these terrorist attacks" Zeybekci said. However Zeybekci calledfor unity among all the residents of Turkey asthe only remedy. On the other hand despite all the attacks Turkisheconomic growth continues. "Turkey is currently theworld's seventh-fastest growing countryand in terms of fiscal policy and control of sovereign debtone of the strongestcountriesin the worlds" concluded Zeybekci.