By Gokhan Ergocun and Muhammed Ali Gurtas
ISTANBUL (AA) - The International Business Forum (IBF), which will be held in the capital Sarajevo this week, aims to support Bosnia and Herzegovina's economy, the head of the forum said.
"This year, the capital Sarajevo was chosen to organize the event for showing the economic potential of this region, known as a war-zone area by the Islamic world, and help the country's development," Erol Yarar told Anadolu Agency.
The main topic of the event is to inform investors in the six main sectors and improve investment opportunities in Bosnia and Herzegovina, he said.
These sectors, identified as a result of the analyses in the last nine months, include food and agriculture, forestry products and furniture, tourism, health, construction, and automotive and metal, he added.
"The event will be attended by over 400 business people from all around the world and meet with 200 Bosnian investors in the country,'' Yarar stressed.
While there is a cultural affinity between Turkey and the Balkans, the bilateral economic cooperation is not at a good level, he noted.
"Turkey is the 11th country among those which make investments in Bosnia and Herzegovina," he said and added: "One of the main targets of the event is also to increase Turkey's investments in the country.''
Turkey and Bosnia and Herzegovina's bilateral trade were at $661.3 million last year, official figures showed.
Referring to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's visits to Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Serbia, he highlighted that these visits support the region's economic development.
- 23rd IBF
The IBFs, organized for the last 23 years, have a main goal of increasing cooperation between Muslim business people, Yarar said.
The forum has been bringing together 42 business associations from 25 different countries since 1995, according to its website.
Within the scope of the two-day forum, starting on Thursday, business people will meet their local counterparts and visit companies in Bosnia and Herzegovina to see the investment opportunities.