The Minister of State for Trade and Development, Joe Costello T.D., has highlighted the significant opportunities to build on the already €1.2bn of trade between Ireland and Turkey and its potential as a hub for Irish companies doing business in the Eastern Mediterranean, the Caucasus and Central Asia.
Minister Costello’s comments come on the back of last week’s very successful Enterprise Ireland trade mission of 25 Irish companies to Turkey. The mission, which visited Istanbul and Ankara, was organised with the support of the local Irish Embassy and included positive discussions with key Turkish government ministers and senior officials on trade and economic cooperation in areas including telecoms, energy, environmental services, health and education. Commenting on the success of the mission, Minister Costello said:
“Irish merchandise exports to Turkey have been developing strongly in recent years, and in 2011 were worth over €465 million. Total combined trade figures for Ireland and Turkey are in the region of €1.2 billion, which is a very impressive figure and one which deserves to be better known. When services are considered, the balance of trade is approximately 60:40 in Ireland’s favour. From my contacts at both government and business level it is clear that Turkey is open and keen to do business with more Irish companies.”
In the course of his visit the Minister welcomed the reopening of the Turkish market to EU beef exports and he asked relevant officials for those remaining restrictions which continue to limit our beef trade with Turkey to be lifted.
Three companies announced business deals during the mission.
Meath firm Kells Stainless announced a new strategic alliance with Umde, one of Turkey’s leading stainless steel fabricators, to jointly target the burgeoning €10bn Turkish pharma industry. The contract will enable Kells Stainless to increase its business in Turkey, with a €2m sales target by the end of 2013.
Meanwhile, Irish mobile marketing company, Brandtone, announced the launch of its promotional campaign for Cif – the Unilever household cleaner range – in Turkey and the official opening of their new office in Istanbul.
Minister Costello officially opened a new office in Ankara for Irish engineering consultancy firm ESB International. The office will provide a platform for ESBI to expand its operations in the Turkish market and will house a number of support functions to support ESBI projects in the country.
Commenting on the company announcements, Minister Costello said:
“Helping Irish companies develop their contacts in Turkey is a priority for Enterprise Ireland and the Irish Embassy in Turkey. I believe that these announcements and the positive feedback from the other delegates on this mission will lead to many more such linkages in the coming year and to a further increase in the number and range of Irish companies doing business in this important regional market.”