US and Turkey should step back and take a look at the economical relations

During the first five months of 2018, a total foreign trade volume of $8.3 billion between Turkey and the US was registered.

In the Jan-May period, Turkey surpassed $3.2 billion of exports to the U.S., with imports amounting $5.1 billion.

Turkey's foreign trade deficit in trade with the U.S. fell steadily in the last three years. In 2017, it fell by 22.4 percent compared to the previous year and reached $3.3 billion.

Exports to the U.S. increased by 30.7 percent year-on-year to $8.7 billion in 2017.

Meanwhile, imports from the U.S. totaled $11.9 billion in 2017, up 9.9 percent from the previous year.

As a US based businessman, I was excepting US-Turkey trade  volume to reach a record high by end of this year, but unfortunately now the sanctions, tariffs, and boycotts threatens business ties between two countries.

The crisis in the Turkish-U.S. relations is most likely to be temporary, but its effects on the economy could be substantial. It is also fact that the tensions in the relations between two NATO allies is shaking emerging markets world-wide as well.

Economy could have been a confidence building measure in bilateral relationship between Washington and Ankara, during such times like today. But unfortunately, the deep-rooted economic relations with a foreign trade volume exceeding $20 billion between two countries now harmed through threats of sanctions and boycotts. It’s very obvious that if countries bring the economy into the political crises, the result not only hurts the political atmosphere but hurts other ties as well.

Washington simply can’t ignore that ‪Turkey has become one of the largest growing source of FDI into the US.

I strongly believe that the problems must be solved by dialogue, not by threat. Channels must be kept open and discourses that cannot be reversed should be avoided.

However, Trump administration continue to threatened to impose more sanctions in upcoming days on Turkey over detained American pastor Andrew Craig Brunson, who was arrested in the Aegean province of Izmir in December 2016.

The deep-rooted economic relations with a foreign trade volume exceeding $20 billion between two countries now harmed through threats of sanctions and boycotts.


Brunson was charged with committing crimes, including spying for the PKK terror group and the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), the group behind the defeated coup attempt of July 2016.

Basically, there is a judiciary process continue in Turkey over Pastor Brunson, and Washington have to respect this process in a similar way how they ask Turkey to respect extradition process of Fetullah Gulen.

Now we have UN meeting in New York this month and both Erdoğan and Trump set to be at the meeting. I think it’s a good opportunity to solve the problems via fruitful dialogue.

Keep in mind that many countries both in Middle East and in Asia are watching how the US engaging with Turkey. There are geopolitical ramifications of how this crisis is resolved.

Let’s hope that both sides can take a step back and take a look at the larger geopolitical questions and find areas where they can build on the relationship.


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