British businesses encouraged to build links with Turkey
Companies in the UK are being encouraged to become more active in the Turkish market by the British government.
According to deputy prime minister Nick Clegg, Turkey is the seventh largest economy in Europe and one of the biggest markets in the whole world.
As a result, he believes it offers many opportunities to enterprises from the UK.
Mr Clegg is currently visiting Turkey as part of a British business delegation in order to establish closer links between the two nations, both diplomatically and in terms of trade.
This could potentially lead to a surge in business money transfer activity between the UK and Turkey over the next few years.
"My main aim this week is to ensure that more UK firms can capitalise on the economic opportunities Turkey offers," Mr Clegg commented.
The deputy prime minister said the British government wants to double bilateral trade over the next three years, as it has already gone up by 40 per cent since 2009.
Mr Clegg acknowledged this is an ambitious target, but said his visit to the country could help this goal become more attainable.
A number of big deals are already being announced throughout the official visit, such as the opening of a multimillion pound manufacturing facility in Cardiff by Turkey's HDM Steel Pipe.
New jobs are also being created in London thanks to hospital group Florence Nightingale's decision to set up its European headquarters in the city.
"It's fantastic to be announcing new jobs for the UK and such an impressive set of deals for British businesses," Mr Clegg said.
According to figures from the British government, more than 2,200 companies from the UK invested in Turkey during 2011. This included prominent brands such as HSBC, Laura Ashley, Tesco, Vodafone and Marks & Spencer.
Statistics also revealed that the number of imports of UK goods and services in Turkey went up by one-fifth last year.