The United Arab Emirates expects to double trade with Turkey after starting talks on an economic accord, Trade Minister Thani al Zeyoudi said on Tuesday.
The two countries have begun negotiating a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) after seeking to put an end to a regional political dispute.
“I see vast potential for the UAE-Türkiye CEPA,” al Zeyoudi said on Twitter after hosting talks with Turkish Trade Minister Mehmet Muş. “By cutting tariffs, promoting free movement of goods, facilitating capital flows and reducing trade barriers, we will make it easier than ever to do business. It will also underpin a new era of cooperation.”
The UAE is seeking to sign CEPAs with several countries after securing such pacts this year with Israel and India.
Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed, the de facto ruler of the UAE, travelled to Turkey in November in the first high-level visit since 2012. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan travelled to the UAE in February to help further ties.
The economic agreement with Turkey will “double bilateral trade, deepen cooperation with two of the region’s largest economies, strengthen the resilience of local supply chains and create new jobs,” al Zeyoudi said.
“The visits we made to Abu Dhabi and Dubai in February under the auspices of our president, opened the doors of a new era in our cultural, political and economic relations with the UAE,” Muş said. “These contacts also formed the basis of the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement negotiations that we started here.”
The UAE is Turkey’s largest trading partner in the Gulf region, with a bilateral trade volume of $8 billion annually, Muş said.