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Turkey set to build economic zone in Djibouti

By Mohammed Taha Tewekel
Thursday, January 22, 2015

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Turkey is set to build an economic zone in Djibouti as part of the former's efforts to encourage the Turkish business community to invest in the Horn of Africa nation at a large scale and to boost economic cooperation between the two countries, a Djiboutian minister said.

"The Turkish companies will assemble and process goods and thereby easily export them to East African region and overseas," Djiboutian Finance and Economic Minister Elias Moussa Daweleh told The Anadolu Agency in an exclusive interview.

"The economic zone will create job opportunities for Djiboutian along with facilitating fertile economic conditions to Turkish investors," the minister added.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is due to visit Djibouti for two days starting Jan. 23, leading a 120-member delegation, including cabinet ministers and investors.

During Erdogan's two-day stay, Daweleh said, he is due to sign several economic cooperation agreements with his Djiboutian counterpart Ismail Omar Guelleh.

"The Turkish government and business community believe that investing in Djibouti is a great opportunity to have access to the East African market and African continent as a whole," the minister said.

"Turkish business leaders are very much aggressive this time to penetrate the African market and this will be realized through Djibouti, which is a gateway to the African market," he went on to say.

He added that the enhanced trade cooperation between his country and Turkey would also benefit neighboring Ethiopia – another stop in Erdogan's looming trip to region.

Ethiopia's economy is naturally interdependent with Djibouti's in multiple ways, the minister said.

"Djibouti and Ethiopia are interlinked with infrastructure, which would help the development of Turkish investments in both countries," he said.


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