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‘Belt and Road’ initiative to boost China, Turkeycooperation, investment

(Xinhua) 2015-04-23 17:05

ANKARA, April 22 -- Turkish academics and officials believed that bilateral economiccooperation and investment will be boosted as China promotes its "Belt and Road"initiatives. 

On Tuesday, Chinese embassy in Ankara hosted an academic forum focused on the "Beltand Road" initiatives, which gathered dozens of Turkey's economic experts and officials. 

In his opening remarks, Yu Hongyang, the Chinese ambassador to Turkey, briefed hisaudience on the action plan of the initiatives, which was unveiled late last month. 

The initiatives, which were put forward by Chinese President Xi Jinping, aim to promoteorderly and free flow of economic factors, highly efficient allocation of resources and deepintegration of markets by enhancing connectivity of Asian, European and Africancontinents and their adjacent seas. 

According to the plan, the initiatives are open to embrace all countries, as well asinternational and regional organizations, and to seek common prosperity. 

The plan has been established on four principles, openness and cooperation, harmony andinclusiveness, market operation, and mutual benefits, emphasizing policy coordination,connectivity, unimpeded trade, financial integration and people-to-people bonds. 

Turkey as a major state located on the ancient Silk Road has already welcomed China's"Belt and Road" Initiative. 

Prof. Ridvan Karluk, chairman of Turgut Ozal University School of Economics, recalled inhis remarks that the ancient silk road started from China and ended in Turkey. 

He believed that the belt and road initiatives should work to benefit the middle class,urging that trade barriers should be minimized, and a green path be issued for the tradersalong the route. 

Prof. Huseyin Bagci, head of the international relations department of the Middle EastTechnical University, said that both China and Turkey will benefit from implementingthese initiatives as long as China maintains its rapid economic growth in the future. 

Guven Sak, director of a Turkish think-tank, hoped his country can attract more foreigninvestment in the future under the framework of the belt and road plan. 

In his speech, Halil Sivgin, president of a Turkey and China friendship and cooperationassociation, believed that China-Turkey cooperation will have a very bright future. 

He urged the two countries to spare no effort in launching more new projects to pushforward the initiatives. 

Turkish former foreign minister Yasar Yakis believed that the implementation of "Belt andRoad" initiatives will foster an even faster economic growth in related countries. 

The Chinese envoy also pointed out China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region has animportant and unique location with abundant resources, adding that it has already seenlarge amount of domestic investment over the years, and will play an essential role in thebelt and road initiatives. 

The growing ties between Turkey and China in recent years, especially on trade andinvestment, may catapult both countries to work closely. The two countries improved theirties to the strategic partnership in 2010. 

According to official statistics, the two-way trade volume between China and Turkey in2014 totaled 27.8 billion U.S. dollars, registering a slight year-on-year decrease of 1.8percent. 

Turkey, with its booming consumer market, proximity to European, Middle Eastern andAfrican markets, has been important destination for Chinese companies that want to tradeand invest.