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Türkiye-China relations: Focus on trade and diplomacy in Fidan’s visit

Türkiye-China relations: Focus on trade and diplomacy in Fidan's visit Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan (R) meets with Chinese Foreign Minister A.B., in Ankara, Türkiye, May 25, 2024. (AA Photo)
Jun 1, 2024 7:49 PM

Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan will visit China starting Monday at the invitation of Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, according to diplomatic sources.

This will be Fidan’s first visit to China as foreign minister, a post he assumed last June. Wang visited Türkiye last July.

During the three-day visit, Fidan is expected to meet with Vice President Han Zheng and Chen Wenqing, a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and head of its Commission for Political and Legal Affairs, in addition to Wang.

Fidan will also meet with Turkish citizens living in China. After engagements in Beijing, he is expected to visit Urumqi and Kashgar on June 4-5.

Fidan’s visit to the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region will be the highest-level visit from Türkiye since President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, then prime minister, visited the region in April 2012.

In recent times, Türkiye has taken steps to strengthen its relations with all regions of China. In this context, Ankara reinforced its diplomatic presence in China by adding the Chengdu Consulate General, opened last year, to its Embassy in Beijing and consulates in Guangzhou, Shanghai, and Hong Kong.

Top issues include trade

With last year’s trade volume between Türkiye and China exceeding $48 billion, and China being Türkiye’s largest trade partner in Asia and the third-largest in the world, economic and commercial ties will be a significant focus of Fidan’s visit.

Discussions will address a more balanced and sustainable trade structure, and explore cooperation opportunities for Chinese investments in Türkiye, particularly in new technology sectors.

Fidan will also discuss harmonizing China’s Belt and Road Initiative with the Trans-Caspian East-West Middle Corridor Initiative. These discussions come as developments in Ukraine, Gaza, and the Red Sea impact global supply line security and some transportation projects.

Other top issues include cooperation in energy, civil aviation, and tourism. Türkiye will stress its commitment to the One China policy and the importance of China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

The talks are expected to cover developments in Ukraine and the Asia-Pacific, with a particular focus on Gaza, where China and Türkiye share similar views on the Palestinian issue.

Fidan’s engagements in Beijing will highlight the importance of achieving a permanent ceasefire in Gaza and steps toward a two-state solution.

Türkiye will also raise the importance of protecting the fundamental rights and freedoms of Uighur Turks and ensuring their prosperity and peace in China.

Last Updated:  Jun 5, 2024 3:56 PM