The Ambassador of Turkey to Seychelles, Ms. Deniz Eke, presented her credentials to Seychelles President James Michel at State House in Seychelles. The newly-accredited Turkish ambassador to Seychelles, Deniz Eke, has expressed her delight that trade between the two countries is improving.
The President and the Ambassador discussed the increase in trade between Seychelles and Turkey as well as people-to-people exchanges, the Blue Economy, tourism, and aviation in their meeting.
After the accreditation ceremony, Ambassador Deniz Eke told the national media that her talks with the President centered on various areas of cooperation where both countries have mutual interests.
She said that Turkey has excellent relations with Seychelles and that Turkey very much supports African integration, African solutions to Africa’s challenges, and that Seychelles is an important partner of cooperation in the African continent.
“We agreed that there is huge potential that can be tapped in terms of commercial relations and investments and to make that possible the only thing that we need to do is to encourage more businessmen to come to Seychelles and more Seychellois businessmen to go to Turkey and see with their own eyes the potential that both our countries possess. It will be our job in the future to organize frequent delegations to visit at all levels, to bring our people closer and to make them aware of the potential that exits in our relations,” said Ambassador Eke.
Ambassador Eke also highlighted academic cooperation as a potential area for collaboration, hinting that Turkish universities might be working together with the University of Seychelles in the near future.
According to figures provided to SNA by the Seychelles Ministry of Foreign Affairs, bilateral trade between Turkey and Seychelles amounted to around $8 million in 2014.
Imports to Seychelles from Turkey, which include food products such as sunflower seed oil, olive oil, lentils and pasta as well as metal products such as bars, rods and wires, amounted to 100.7 million Seychelles rupees or around $7.4 million in 2014, up from SCR53.8 million ($4 million) in 2013. Last year was also a good year in terms of exportation of canned tuna to Turkey, amounting to about SCR 5.6 million ($420,000).
From January to April 2015, so far SCR 38 million ($2.8 million) worth of goods have been imported to Seychelles from Turkey.
Last year, 403 Turkish residents visited the Seychelles islands, but for the first half of 2015, visitor arrivals have already reached 347, compared to 220 for the same period last year, indicating a sizable increase.
Ambassador Deniz Eke is based in Nairobi.