TUSKON,in cooperation with the Tajik Embassy in Ankara, on December 22 brought some 500 businessmen from Turkey and Tajikistan together at a business forum in İstanbul.
Speaking to Samanyolu TV before the forum, TUSKON President Rızanur Meral said bilateral trade between Turkey and Tajikistan hit $325 million in 2008 but experienced a slight decrease the following year because of the global financial crisis. He added that this figure should increase to $1 billion within three years and they, as TUSKON, aim to do their part to help the two countries, starting with the Turkey-Tajikistan Trade and Investment Forum.
The forum began with presentations from three Tajik ministers informing Turkish businessmen of the business opportunities in the Central Asian country. Those who addressed the Turkish businessmen were Tajikistan’s Economic Development and Trade Minister Farrukh Hamraliyev, Energy and Industry Minister Sherali Gul and Transport and Communication Minister Olim Boboev. Turkish President Abdullah Gül and his Tajik counterpart, Emomalii Rahmon, also attended the business forum, which proceeded with tête-à-tête meetings between businessmen from both countries. The meetings were held in the fields of energy, construction, textile, agriculture, furnishings, health and tourism.
During his TV appearance before the forum, Meral recalled that Tajikistan is a country that meets most of its domestic needs by importing from other countries, but said the emphasis of the forum was not only trade but also investment. He encouraged Turkish companies to open offices in the country, convincing the local authorities of their professionalism and seriousness. “The cost of having such an office for six months to one-and-a-half years, let’s say, will certainly be offset by the first good project to be received there,” he said.