Strait Talk

Türkiye’s Trade With Middle East and Gulf Countries Rebound

Over the past year, Türkiye and several Arab states saw their relations rapidly improve, ending years of animosity and mistrust. Back in 2017, Türkiye backed Qatar against a Saudi-led blockade that fractured the region into opposing camps. Those divisions also played out in several conflicts, from Libya, Yemen and Syria. But after a coordinated campaign of shuttle diplomacy, Türkiye's ties with the Gulf vastly improved. And the country's latest trade figures are showing the results. Türkiye's latest trade data shows its exports to Gulf and Middle Eastern countries hit $25 billion in the first nine months of 2022, a nearly 25% increase from the same period last year. Iraq took the biggest share of Turkish exports, totaling $7.5 billion. But it was with Saudi Arabia where Türkiye saw the most improvement. Turkish exports to Saudi Arabia increased by 180% compared to 2021, when trade ties were nearing all-time lows. So, what's behind this vastly improved trade environment, and will this momentum last into next year? Guests: Hafed Al Ghwell Political Analyst Giorgio Cafiero CEO of Gulf State Analytics

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