Mexico-Turkey trade talks picked up momentum as a result of the visit made to Mexico by Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdrogan, earlier this week.

A Mexico-Turkey trade agreement has been some time in the making. Negotiations appear to becoming close to being finalized. Turkish Economy Minister, Zafer Caglayan, has been recently quoted as saying that “Turkey is ready to sign a comprehensive free trade agreement with Mexico.” He also expressed his belief that the resolution of any outstanding issues and negotiating points would be addressed during Tayyip Erdrogan’s meetings in Mexico City with his Mexican counterpart, Enrique Peña Nieto.

Both parties to the forthcoming pact are confident that a Mexico-Turkey trade deal will be closed sometime during 2015. Commercial exchange between the two countries has demonstrated a growth trend over the last several years. In 2013 Mexico and Turkey exchanged US $886 million in goods and services, which represented an eleven percent increase over the previous year’s figure. During that year Mexico exported almost US $359 worth of goods and services to Turkey, while Turkey sent a bit more than US $527 million to its North American customer. When viewed over a longer period of time (2003-2010) Mexico-Turkey trade grew at an annual average rate of 19.6%. Today, combined bi-lateral exchange is valued at US $1.2 billion.  Mexico stands as Turkey’s largest Latin American commercial partner.

In addition to the elimination of tariffs on goods and services, those negotiating the Mexico-Turkey trade talks expect that the accord will result in the greater flow of capital investment between the two countries. One of the areas that Mexico feels that it will gain in terms of Turkish capital investment is in the automotive sector. According to Mexico’s embassador to Turkey, Martha Bárcena, Turkish suppliers are among those that do business with automotive OEMs such as Volkswagen, Audi, BMW and Kia, all of which have Mexican operations.

In addition to goods and services and foreign direct investment, officials from the trading partner countries  have also addressed the issue of visa-free travel between the  Mexico and Turkey. Turkish president Erdrogan suggested that succeed in securing an agreement in this area would constitute progress in solidifying relations between the two nations. 2017 will mark the ninety years during which there have been formal dipolomatic relations between the nations.

The Mexican daily, El Economista, reports that Turkish investment totaling fifty one companies is located in the states of Guanajuato, Mexico, Quintana Roo, Nayarit and Nuevo Leon.

Read the primary source for this post in its original Spanish at El Economista.