TURKEY - MEXICO BUSINESS COUNCIL

Year of Establishment:2008
Counterpart Organisation :COMCE (Consejo Empresarial Mexicano de Comercio Exterior, Inversión y Tecnología)
Chairman representing Turkey : Albert Saydam
Company : Tekno Kauçuk Sanayi A.Ş.
Counterpart Chairman : Jorge Lopez Morton
Company : Total Energy Systems, Chairman

The bilateral trade relation between Mexico and Turkey is a recent development. In 2006, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Turkey formulated its Latin America strategy, DEİK’s Board of Directors took up the task of establishing a Business Council with Mexico. It was finally decided to establish the Council under the umbrella of the North America Business Councils and in accordance with NAFTA arrangement between Mexico, the USA and Canada. The task was assigned to Varol Dereli who had been presenting Mexico for 17 years as its Honorary Consular in Istanbul. The DEİK/Turkey-Mexico Business Council became official with the agreement between DEİK and COMCE, the Foreign Trade, Investment and Technology Council of Mexican Entrepreneurs, during a state visit by the then Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Turkey, Ali Babacan, to Mexico on 9-12 December 2008.

Mexico, world’s 13th largest economy, in 1994 signed the NAFTA Treaty with its Northern neighbours, the United States of America and Canada. The treaty has given a considerable economic boost to country. The Mexican government is well-aware of its dependence to US economy and is interested to diversify its economic relations. In 2000, it signed a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the European Union. As of today, Mexico is party to FTAs with 42 countries. However, despite the FTA with the EU, the Mexican government is under pressure from its own business community not to sign any more Free Trade Agreements with other countries which also affects Turkey. The existing FTAs and NAFTA limit Mexico’s trading needs with other countries.

Currently more than 5,000 European companies are active in Mexico. They constitute about 23% of all foreign investment in the country. In 2007, Mexico had a population of 108.7 m and a GDP of US 893.4 billion which translates into a per capita income of USD 12,382. Its growth rate stood at 3.3%, with 4% inflation. Total foreign trade amounted to USD 522 billion (exports: USD 249.9 billion, imports: USD 272.1 billion). These figures underline Mexico’s leading role in the region.

For Europe, Mexico is an important gateway to South America, while Mexico’s leadership is aware of the need to expand and diversify the country’s foreign trade. They have declared their intention to organise business visits to our country. On the other hand, Mexico’s special relationship with the USA under the NAFTA Treaty may also attract interest of small and medium-sized Turkish investors. After all, Mexico pays no customs duty on its exports to the United States

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