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Bosnia and Turkey enjoy excellent ties: Ambassador

Bosnia's ambassador to Ankara Bakir Sadovic | Youtube snapshot

Bosnia's ambassador to Ankara Bakir Sadovic told to Daily Sabah in an exclusive interview that the two countries, Bosnia and Turkey enjoy excellent political, cultural and growing economic ties, sources reported.

Sadovic stated that Ankara's inclusive role for all ethnic groups in the Western Balkans shows its significance in the region. He welcomed Turkey's role in the Balkans, stressing that all of the countries in the region consider Turkey a friend, which gives hope for building a better future.

Bosnia-Herzegovina's ambassador to Ankara highlighted Turkey's efforts to contribute to the reconciliation process in the region, telling the Turkish daily that "Turkey plays an important role in the Western Balkans and gives us hope for the future because it's not supporting one ethnic group but supporting all of the countries in the region."

Sadovic said Turkey has taken important steps for enhancing dialogue between the countries in the region, including Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia and Croatia. As Turkey and Bosnia-Herzegovina continue to enjoy strong bilateral relations, the ambassador said that the two countries "have excellent political, cultural and growing economic ties that can be additionally improved."

"We hope that investments from Turkey will come to the Balkans to help open a new chapter for economic prosperity and contribute to improving the quality of life in the region," Sadovic went on to say. He also said that visits from Turkey's highest state officials, as well as by companies interested in business investments, are welcome in Bosnia-Herzegovina as well as the region as a whole.

The Bosnian official also commented on Turkey's efforts in providing aid to Syrian refugees, saying that it is touching that "Turkish people opened their homes to the Syrian refugees."

Touching on the economic ties between Turkey and Bosnia-Herzegovina, Sadovic underscored that "The leaders of our two countries have set a goal to increase trade to $1 billion, which is challenging but achievable. The Turkish economy endures despite negative and tragic events in its environment and that encourages us to increase our efforts to strengthen economic ties between our two friendly countries."

Sadovic said "During the years of war, Bosnians felt deserted," and that the support given to refugees means a lot to them. He said his country will also provide aid to the Syrian refugees in an effort to show that they have not been forgotten.

Sadovic pointed out that last year Turkey placed 10th on the list of the biggest investors in Bosnia-Herzegovina. He said that there is room for further improvement and added, "Negotiations are under way between the Turkish Economy Ministry, the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relationships of Bosnia-Herzegovina to adjust the free trade agreement between the two countries." He said: "I hope that the change in the agreement will provide additional opportunities to deepen and expand the cooperation between our two countries, especially in the field of agriculture and livestock."