Turkey to boost trade with Iran

Nov. 26, 2013 at 6:56 AM
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ISTANBUL, Turkey, Nov. 26 (UPI) -- Turkey plans to increase trade with Iran in the next six months, the time world powers allotted to reach a deal to halt Iran's nuclear program, officials said.

"Turkey is exporting more than 20,000 products to Iran at the moment. I hope we are going to make the most of these next six months," Economy Minister Zafer Caglayan told an Istanbul conference Monday.

Iran was Turkey's third-largest export market in 2012, but sanctions imposed on the Islamic republic by the West had an impact on Turkey's trade and in the first nine months of this year cost Turkey $6 billion, Caglayan said.

The Turkish minister said his country sells gold, gold-plated silver, steel, iron, textile yarn, fabrics, land transportation vehicles, electrical machinery and appliances to Iran, Today's Zaman reported.

Referring to the interim agreement reach among Russia, France, China, the United States, Britain and Germany (the so-called P5-plus-1 countries) and Iran in Geneva, Switzerland, Sunday, Bilgin Aygul, vice president of the Turkish-Iranian Business Council, told the newspaper he hoped it would pave the way for a final agreement.

"Even though the nuclear deal with Iran is an interim agreement, it is about renewal of confidence between Western powers and Iran. Hopefully this interim agreement will pave the way for a final agreement. This deal will make the Iranian economy stronger," he said.

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