15.09.2014 · The Government

Breakthrough in free trade negotiations with Turkey

Breakthrough in free trade negotiations with Turkey

The Faroe Islands and Turkey are about to sign a free trade agreement.

Last week, negotiators from the Prime Minister’s Foreign Service and TAKS (customs office) met with a Turkish delegation in Ankara.

On Wednesday 10 September the parties reached an agreement in principle on a final draft for a free trade agreement between the Faroes and Turkey.

This is a long-awaited breakthrough as 15 years have passed since negotiations commenced.

“Faroese trade relations are developing in many promising new directions. Turkey is a large and growing market for both salmon and pelagic fish. Today Faroese exports to Turkey face high custom and duty tariffs, thereby preventing these exports to develop further. The EFTA countries have free trade agreements with Turkey. Therefore, it has been difficult for Faroese exporters to compete with their counterparts from, for example, Iceland and Norway,” says Prime Minister Kaj Leo Holm Johannesen.

In fact the free trade agreement with Turkey will ensure that all major export products originating in the Faroe Islands are exempt from customs and other duties when these are imported into the Turkish market.

As such, the new agreement can have huge significance for Faroese export industries.

The agreement is expected to be signed at ministerial level later this year. Gunnar Holm-Jacobsen, director of the Foreign Service headed the Faroese delegation.

Caption: Gunnar Holm-Jacobsen, Faroese chief negotiator, and Murat Yapici, Turkish chief negotiator.