When 15 Asia Pacific countries, including world giants such as China, Japan, South Korea, Indonesia, Australia and Malaysia, came together and signed the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement, now it is time to format the rules of trade in the world.
Aegean Exporters’ Associations Coordinator Chairperson Jak Eskinazi suggested that Izmir be a “Free City”. Eskinazi pointed out that as well as attracting investment from RCEP countries, İzmir Ports could be a new gateway for RCEP countries to the West. Eskinazi also underlined Turkey should develop a special foreign trade strategy towards RCEP countries.
“Logistics Centres should be specially designed for RCEP countries”
While Turkey’s exports reached to 7 billion 168 billion dollars in 2019, imports valued at 36 billion 108 million dollars from RCEP countries.
Thus Turkey had a foreign trade deficit of 29.5 billion dollars in 2019. However 28 billion 940 million dollars of total deficit accounts for RCEP countries.
“If İzmir becomes a free city, it will become a centre of attraction for RCEP countries“
Indicating that India is likely to join RCEP in near future, Eskinazi noted, “The largest free trade area has occurred with this deal. Besides 2.2 billion people live and 30 percent of global trade is done among these countries covered by the agreement. It is vital that Turkish companies invest in these countries. Meanwhile Turkey has free trade agreements with Malaysia, Singapore and South Korea. A new state support mechanism should be implemented very quickly for Turkish companies that will make investments in RCEP area, especially produce and export for those countries.”
“The Logistics Centres support, which has been recently put into practice by the Ministry of Commerce, should be specially designed for RCEP countries,” Eskinazi added…