Event Reports |
October 31, 2022

Report of the 1st India-Turkey Bilateral Dialogue

October 25-28, 2022
Ankara, Türkiye
India-Türkiye Relations: Trade, Commerce and Energy

India and Türkiye share historical connections. During the pre-independence years, Mahatma Gandhi had clubbed the Indian Non-Cooperation Movement against the Britishers with the Turkish Khilafat Movement. In the post-independence years, the India-Türkiye economic and commercial cooperation constitutes an important dimension of the bilateral relationship. In 2021-22, the bilateral trade between the two countries crossed USD 10.70 billion. Indian companies have invested about USD 126 million in Türkiye (as per Central Bank of Türkiye data) and Turkish investment in India is about USD 210.47 million (as per Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, India). Despite a small presence of diaspora in both of the countries, celebrating each others’ cultures has been a part of the Indian and Turkish society.

Despite these factors, the extent of contemporary relationship between the two countries has been constrained. In order to explore the India-Türkiye relationship and gain a better understanding of opportunities and challenges, India Foundation and Ankara Center for Crisis and Policy Studies (ANKASAM – Ankara Kriz ve Siyaset Araştırmaları Merkezi) collaborated to organize the first edition of India-Türkiye Bilateral Dialogue in Ankara, Türkiye, from 25-28 October 2022. Under an institutional arrangement with ANKASAM, a high-level delegation from India Foundation undertook a visit to Ankara.

The Indian delegation comprised of – Mr MJ Akbar, Former Minister of State (External Affairs) & Former Member of Parliament; Mr Amar Sinha, Member, Governing Council, India Foundation & Former Indian Ambassador; Captain Alok Bansal, Director, India Foundation; Mr Nitin Gokhale, National Security Analyst & Founder, Bharat Shakti & StratNews Global; and Ms Soumya Chaturvedi, Senior Research Fellow, India Foundation.

A visit was organized at Ankara University Technopolis, where Mr M. Güray Değerli, General Manager, briefed the delegation about the capacity and projects undertaken by the institute. Dr Tugrul Imer, Chairman of the Board of Directors, Gazi University Technopark, introduced the campus to the delegates and shared the success of the techno park in providing a platform for start-ups involved in businesses of strategic nature.

A visit was organized to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Türkiye, where Mr Ufuk Ulutaş, Chairman of Center for Strategic Studies, addressed the delegation. The interaction was centred on the potential of increasing the people-to-people connect between the two countries.

The Indian delegation was hosted by Mr Gürsel Baran, Chairman, Ankara Chamber of Commerce for an interaction and a candid discussion took place on the economic relationship of the two countries and the opportunities and challenges in trade and investment sector.

The delegation also met with a delegation headed by Mr Efkan Ala, Member of Parliament, Head of Foreign Relations & head of Türkiye-India Inter-Parliamentary Friendship Group at the headquarters of AK Party. The delegation comprised of senior leaders from the AK Party, including Mr Erif Demirkiran, Vice President of Foreign Relations, AK Party and Former Member of Parliament. The delegations from both sides exchanged their views on the relationship between the two countries, particularly on political engagements and the need for strengthening it.

A visit was organized to the Turkish Grand National Assembly, where Mr Akif Çağatay Kılıç, Head of the Turkish Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee & Former Minister for Sports and Youth Affairs addressed the delegation. Issues of common interest to both countries were discussed after the initial remarks.

Over the course of the visit, two important interactions were organized with the host institutional partner – ANKASAM. The first was a press conference, covered extensively by the print and digital media of Türkiye and neighbouring regions. Mr MJ Akbar, Former Minister of State (External Affairs) & Former Member of Parliament; Captain Alok Bansal, Director, India Foundation; and Prof. Mehmet Seyfettin EROL, President of ANKASAM, participated in the press conference.

A closed-door interaction was also organized between delegates from India and experts from ANKASAM. The Turkish delegation from ANKASAM comprised of Prof. Mehmet Seyfettin EROL, President of ANKASAM; Retired Ambassador Aydin NURHAN, Senior Advisor to the President of ANKASAM; Prof. Dr Cem KARADELI, Senior Advisor to ANKASAM; Dr Cenk Pala, Senior Energy Adviser; and Dr Kadir Ertaç Celik, Secretary General of ANKASAM. Exchange of ideas and opinions took place on issues such as reformed multilateralism, and cooperation on industrial, infrastructure sector, culture, tourism, climate change, energy. The delegates also discussed the roadblocks in the relationship between the two countries and the way forward on strengthening the relationship. The visit concluded with a visit to some of the prominent Turkish landmarks in Ankara, including – Anıtkabir, Ankara Castle, and Museum of Anatolian Civilizations.

Latest News

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

eighteen − 4 =