Venezuelan foreign minister praises 'extraordinary momentum' in ties with Türkiye

Venezuelan foreign minister praises 'extraordinary momentum' in ties with Türkiye

During visit to Türkiye, Yvan Gil assesses new era of Türkiye-Venezuela relations, points to economic opportunities

By Muhammet Tarhan

ISTANBUL (AA) — The amicable relationship between the Turkish and Venezuelan leaders played a key role in the progress of the two countries' bilateral ties in recent years, said the Latin American nation's foreign minister, who was on a visit to Türkiye on Friday.

Assessing the new era of relations between Ankara and Caracas, Yvan Gil told Anadolu that the ties between the two nations gained "extraordinary momentum" in recent years, particularly after Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro's visit to Türkiye in 2017.

The two countries have signed significant agreements in political, commercial, and economic spheres, boasting numerous partnerships, said Gil, emphasizing that both nations share a similar political vision, respecting a multi-polar world order, and adhering to international law.

He also stressed the importance of the bilateral trade volume, which reached $1.2 billion last year, saying the two countries aim to further increase this figure to $3 billion, demonstrating the potential for robust economic cooperation.

The Venezuelan Foreign Minister highlighted the amicable relationship between the leaders of both nations, which contributes to the acceleration of diplomatic engagement. He pointed out that Turkish Airlines has regular daily flights connecting Caracas and Istanbul, a testament to the deepening ties.

Furthermore, Gil underscored the significance of recent agreements signed between Türkiye and Venezuela, including a trade agreement, a double taxation avoidance agreement, and most notably, an agreement to protect investments.

Emphasizing their solidarity, he expressed confidence in Ankara's ability to recover from the recent earthquake, under the leadership of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. He reiterated Venezuela's commitment to maintaining close collaboration with Türkiye during these challenging times.

Regarding Venezuela's stance on international conflicts, he stressed the importance of Türkiye's efforts toward resolving the situation in Ukraine through diplomatic means. He praised the role of Ankara in advocating for peaceful solutions and highlighted its substantial contributions to worldwide grain exports.

"Moreover, Türkiye brought Russia and Ukraine together in Istanbul just before the war. However, Ukraine violated the discussed terms and failed to keep its promises, leading to an unavoidable conflict. We believe that the pursuit of peace must continue. Sustaining this artificial war is highly dangerous for humanity. Therefore, Türkiye's position is crucial. Diplomatic solutions are necessary to resolve all issues, as military methods cannot yield any positive outcomes."

- Economic opportunities in Venezuela

On investment opportunities in Venezuela, the minister highlighted the country's remarkable 15% growth last year, despite international sanctions. The expansion was largely driven by non-oil sectors, with international agencies projecting around 5% growth this year, signaling excellent opportunities for investors, said Gil.

Venezuela attracted significant investment from European companies, especially in gas and oil extraction, making it an opportune time for Turkish and Venezuelan entrepreneurs to invest in each other's countries, he said.

With Venezuela home to the world's fifth-largest gas reserves and the largest oil reserves, Gil stressed the potential for lucrative investments.

He also addressed Venezuela's strong agricultural and food production sectors, attracting interest from firms in the Middle East, Latin America, and Europe. He said it was a perfect time to invest in Venezuela due to the nation's abundant natural resources.

On economic sanctions, he stressed that the measures imposed against Venezuela were completely illegal and constituted criminal actions. He called for their immediate and unconditional removal, asserting that no state should impose sanctions on another, as this practice belonged in the past.

The foreign minister highlighted Venezuela's commitment to maintaining open channels of communication with all countries, including the US, based on mutual respect, international law, and adherence to UN norms. He expressed optimism that once these principles were respected, Caracas and Washington could re-establish normal relations.

Touching on regional cooperation, he expressed Venezuela's interest in joining the BRICS bloc, seeing it as an essential and powerful economic development organization. He underlined the five-nation group's focus on complementarity among its members and its role as a stabilizing force in the world's new geopolitical landscape.

Gil also reasserted Venezuela's belief in a multipolar world, supporting regional organizations such as the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). He expressed his country's desire to engage with and support these blocs, strengthening relationships and promoting global stability.

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