, MALABO, Nov 20 – The Second Africa-Turkey Partnership Summit entered the second Thursday at the West African capital of Equatorial Guinea, Malabo.
The summit brings together African Heads of State and Government and high ranking Turkish officials led by President Recep Tayyid Erdogan.
President Uhuru Kenyatta is represented by Amb. Amina Mohamed, the Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs and International Trade.
Under the theme New Model of Partnership for the Strengthening of Sustainable Development and Integration, the summit is deliberating the progress of the Africa-Turkey Partnership since the First Africa-Turkey Summit which was held in Istanbul, in April 2008 with participation of 49 countries.
The summit is expected to adopt the Joint Implementation Plan of Africa-Turkey Partnership for the period 2015-2018. The Joint Implementation Plan focuses on the execution of key projects identified as priority areas of cooperation between African countries and Turkey.
The key projects are drawn from the main areas of cooperation which include trade and investment, agriculture, health, peace and security, infrastructure development and tourism.
Commenting about the summit, Mohamed said co-operation between Africa and Turkey can facilitate the realization of Africa’s Agenda 2063 and the Post 2015 Development Agenda.
She said there was need to ensure the identified areas of cooperation are consistent with the continent’s development agenda.
“The Africa-Turkey partnership should place emphasis on aligning the priority projects to the African Union Commission’s Strategic Plan and Agenda 2063.”
Turkey’s policy of opening up to Africa dates back to the Action Plan adopted in 1998 and significant progress has since been made.
Bilateral trade volume reached $23.4 billion in 2013 with all of Africa and $7.5 billion with sub-Saharan-Africa compared to about 750mn 2000.
People to people contacts have intensified tremendously as a result of direct flights between Turkey and African Countries.
In 2012, Africa received 31 percent of Turkey’s Official Development Assistance, representing $772 million.
Cooperation between Turkey and Africa extends to peace and stability in the continent, and Turkey is currently providing personnel and contributing financially to six of the nine United Nations missions in Africa.
On the strength of the growing cooperation, Turkey was accorded observer status by African Union in 2005.