LONDON-Turkey and the UK are one step nearer to a free commerce settlement after a brand new spherical of technical talks, Britain’s consul normal to Istanbul stated Wednesday.

“Further progress made on draft UK-Turkey Free Trade Agreement at ninth round of technical talks on 28 July,” Judith Slater stated on Twitter.

“Aim to put arrangements in place this year for our future trading relationship,” the British Consul Normal to Istanbul and Commerce Commissioner for Japanese Europe and Central Asia added. Turkey and the UK have been in talks to signal a commerce settlement for the post-Brexit period and such a deal is “very close”, in keeping with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.

Cavusoglu, who visited London for a collection of talks earlier this month, informed The Monetary Occasions (FT) that negotiations between the 2 international locations on a commerce deal overlaying manufactured items, agriculture, and companies are “going very well” and that they have been “close to finalizing it.”

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“If you look at the volume of our bilateral trade, 95% of it is industrial products, and we agreed on that and 5% is agriculture and services,” Cavusoglu stated.

The FT underlined that the UK is Turkey’s second-biggest buying and selling companion after Germany with a commerce quantity of £18.eight billion ($24.three billion) and greater than 2,500 UK corporations are working in Turkey, together with BP, Shell, Vodafone, Unilever, BAE Programs, HSBC, Aviva, and Diageo.

The 2 international locations have been holding commerce talks which gained pace after Britain’s exit from the EU on Dec. 31, 2019, and the UK is on the brink of signal commerce offers with just a few third international locations straight after the exit transition interval, which is unlikely to be prolonged past the tip of this yr.

Cavusoglu stated Britain and Turkey have agreed already to extend the bilateral commerce, including: “… in volume we set a $20 billion [bilateral trade] target.” The highest Turkish diplomat additionally stated after his assembly with Prime Minister Boris Johnson and International Secretary Dominic Raab that Turkey and the UK would cooperate in lots of fields after Brexit.

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“Even if the UK departs from the EU, it will continue to be one of the most important parts of the European continent.”