Turkey's economy minister met Tuesday with his Beninese counterpart in the Turkish capital, Ankara, holding talks aimed at improving business relations between the two nations.
"We attach importance to trade with Benin [...] We want to have relations with Benin not only in exports and imports, but also in investments and construction business. In sub-Sahara we have more than 424 companies operating in different sectors, and investments worth of nearly $2.5 billion. Unfortunately, Turkish companies do not have remarkable investments in Benin. I invite Turkish businessmen to discover and invest in Benin," Zafer Caglayan told reporters during a meeting with his Beninese counterpart Jonas Aliou Gbian.
Caglayan said that Turkey had strengthened its relations with Benin, adding trade volume between the two countries increased to nearly $25 billion from $3 billion in the past decade.
"Europeans see wealth under the earth when they look at the African continent. But we have a different look. We look through the heart," Caglayan said.
Gbian, on his part, said that Benin needs "Turkey's physical existence" for private investments in his country, specifically in the fields of energy, transportation, harbors and in agriculture.
Gbian said his country was planning to hold a series of events for Turkish investors to promote business opportunities in Benin the country's free trade zones.
Also participating in the meeting was Barthelemy Dahoga Kassa, Benin's minister of energy petroleum and mineral research, water and renewable energy development.