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TURKEY- GREECE ECONOMIC RELATIONS

TURKEY- GREECE ECONOMIC RELATIONS

The most concrete reflections of dialogue and co-operation between Turkey and Greece are observed in the fields of trade, economy, transport and tourism. In 2014 Turkish trade volume with Greece reached 5.6 billion USD, which corresponds to nearly twice the 2010 trade figures established by the YDIK mechanism. When there was a decline in the bilateral trade volume during 2015 and 2016, the figures (3,5 billion USD) started to increase in 2017.

The total value of Greece’s direct investments in Turkey is about $ 6.8 billion and Turkish investment in Greece is about $ 500 millions. Businessmen seem to be interested in establishing partnerships with Greek companies through the tenders and privatization programs in Greece, especially in recent years such as marinas and port management. Also, T.C. Ziraat Bank has been providing banking services in Greece since 2009 with one branch in Athens, Gumulcine and İskeçe.

One of the areas of cooperation that the two countries give great importance to develop is transportation. With THY leading the pack, the weekly flights to different destinations between two countries made by the airlines in our country reached to 44. It is aimed to improve maritime, railway and road transportation as well as air transportation, launching ship services between İzmir and Thessaloniki for cargo and passenger transportation, establishing the Istanbul-Thessaloniki high-speed train line and certain joint projects for constructing a second highway bridge at the İpsala-Kipi border crossing.

It is believed that the number of tourists who are visiting the other country will increase even more with the passing of these projects. In 2017 approximately 921.000 tourists from Turkey visited Greece and 595.000 tourists from Greece visited Turkey. Since 2012 Turkish  citizens who have traveled to Lesvos, Chios, Samos, Rhodes, Kos, Meis, and Simi have obtained the visa with very short timming procedures. This visa application also contributes to the increase the number of tourists.

One of the economic developments in recent years, the development of natural gas trade agreement between Turkey, Greece and Italy have been commissioned. Turkey-Greece-Italy Gas Transport Corridor (TYİB) is expected to develop the natural gas trade between the three countries.

Thessaloniki centered about 70% of the actual trade between Turkey and Greece, via northern Greece, supported by the fact that the majority of the population of Thessaloniki and northern Greece is of Anatolian origin and that this population have played an important role in the increase of the trade between both countries in the last 10 years. It is estimated that the 60% of the trade capital of Greece is conducted by the companies in Thessaloniki, North Greece and the Balkan region. Northern Greece is a region where production is mainly made in particular sectors of the Greek economy like agriculture, animal husbandry and textile. Some of the rare heavy industries in Greece are located in Northern Greece.

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