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Saturday, March 24, 2018, 

MATTO: Full trade liberalization with Turkey and free-trade zone in Gevgelija

MATTO: Full trade liberalization with Turkey and free-trade zone in Gevgelija

Skopje, 28 September 2017 (MIA) - Full trade liberalization between Macedonia and Turkey is the demand of the companies that are members of the Macedonian-Turkish Chamber of Commerce (MATTO). They believe that it will allow Turkish investments in the country to double, from $1.2 billion to $2 billion. 

Also, exchange of goods could significantly rise, from $400 million to an estimated $1 billion.

In cooperation with one of the largest free-trade zones in Turkey, MATTO is mulling to open a free economic zone in Gevgelija, where both domestic and Turkish companies would invest under conditions applied equally, as it is being announced by the government.

"We are making efforts to open a free-trade zone that will be available for Turkish and Macedonian businessmen, MATTO President Ajdovan Ademovski told a news conference Thursday.

He said Turkish companies were particularly interested in investing in energy, followed by the textile industry, agriculture, animal husbandry, fruit harvesting, food industry and tourism.

"If trade is liberalized, then we will witness a swift rise in investments in Macedonia and vice versa, Macedonian businesses will be able more easily to join the Turkish market of 80 million inhabitants," stated Ademovski.

Companies in Bursa, mainly from the automotive industry, want to invest in free-trade zones.

"Interest is also shown by Turkish companies in the energy sector, but they expect to examine the energy policy of the new government and its policy on support and development of investments," said Benjamin Kutlu, economic attache in the Turkish embassy. 

According to him, in addition the full trade liberalization, a new set of measures of the new government for support to investments will help a lot to boost trade between the countries.

Macedonia and Turkey signed a free trade agreement in 1999 under which customs duties for all industrial products had been revoked. Agricultural produces and food products are still subject to customs duties, although quotas have been introduced for some of them. ba/18:37


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