Bosnia and Herzegovina-Turkey Agriculture Business Forum was held to create dialogue between Bosnian and Turkish companies operating in the agriculture sector. Minister of Food, Agriculture and Livestock Ahmet Esref Fakıbaba was present at the forum where Director General Ayhan Karayama represented the Agricultural Credit Cooperatives of Turkey.
Agriculture Business Forums have been organized so far to increase Turkey’s market share in agriculture as well as to expand into new markets. The twelfth forum took place in Sarajevo on 26 October 2017. 120 Turkish and 180 Bosnian business people attended Bosnia and Herzegovina-Turkey Agriculture Business Forum organized under the co-presidency of Turkey’s Minister of Food, Agriculture and Livestock Ahmet Esref Fakıbaba and Bosnia and Herzegovina's Foreign Trade and Economic Relations Minister Mirko Sarovic.
In his opening remarks Minister Fakıbaba emphasized the close relation between Turkey and Bosnia and Herzegovina and stated the two countries supported each other during hard times. "Increasing the trade volume between the two countries is among our most important goals, and I am confident that we will reach the target of $1 billion in a very short time," said Fakıbaba.
Fakıbaba reminded that Turkey has had bilateral talks with 9 countries, namely Georgia, Iran, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, Czechia, Albania, Serbia, Russia and Qatar, and regional agricultural business forums with 50 countries from Africa and 18 countries from the Arab world. It was underlined that agribusiness forums contribute to commercial developments and help define and develop agricultural investment areas, create sustainable cooperation among the agricultural companies in both countries. Fakıbaba announced that there would be a second forum between Turkey and Bosnia and Herzegovina to be organized in 2018 in Turkey.
Bosnia and Herzegovina's Foreign Trade and Economic Relations Minister Mirko Sarovic highlighted that Bosnia and Herzegovina-Turkey Agriculture Business Forum has been the most important event to be organized in the field of agriculture in Bosnia and Herzegovina over the last few years. Minister Sarovic said Turkey, where they exported most agricultural products in 2016, is the most important country for Bosnia and Herzegovina in terms of foreign trade, and added that he expects the trade volume to boost this year. Expressing his appreciation for the current economic cooperation, Sarovic told that more Turkish investors would come to Bosnia and Herzegovina with the improvements to be made for better investment opportunities.
Member of the Board of Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) Faik Yavuz and Vice President of Bosnia and Herzegovina Chamber of Foreign Trade Nemanja Vasic made speeches, too. In his speech, Yavuz noted that the free trade agreement signed with Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2003 established a solid ground between the two countries and since then the trade volume has increased 10 times.
A panel titled “The Future of Mutual Agriculture Business between Turkey and Bosnia and Herzegovina” had been held before the opening of Bosnia and Herzegovina-Turkey Agriculture Business Forum. Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Minister of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations Midhat Salı, Foreign Investment Promotion Agency (FIPA) Executive Director for Promotion and Analysis Slavica Korica, President of Cattle Breeders’ Association of Turkey Kamil Özcan, Director General of Ziraat Bank Bosnia and Herzegovina Ali Rıza Akbaş made presentations on agricultural financing, agribusiness and investment in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Representatives of meat, seed, dairy products, flour, vegetable oil, fresh fruit and vegetables, and agricultural finance sectors found the opportunity to establish ties with each other and increase their trade volume at B2B talks where ACC was also present and represented its subsidiaries Gübretaş, Tarkim, Tareks and TK Birlik.