Relations between Turkey and Bulgaria

Political Relations :

Turkey and Bulgaria are two friendly, neighborly and allied countries. With Bulgaria embracing democracy and free market economy relations have developed, high level visits between the two countries have increased.

Turkey has supported the integration of Bulgaria with Euro-Atlantic structures. Bulgaria joined NATO in March 2004 and became member of the EU as of 1 January 2007.

- Last visits at the level of Presidents were the visit of Rosen Plevneliev (2012) and 11th President Abdullah Gül (2011) respectively.

- Speaker of the Parliament Cemil Çiçek visited Sofia on 11 October 2012.

- The “High Level Cooperation Council”(HLCC), co-chaired by the Prime Ministers was held in Ankara on 20 March 2012.

Turkey-Bulgaria Inter-parliamentary Friendship Group’s co-president from the Turkish side is AK Party İstanbul deputy Aziz Babuşcu and from the Bulgarian side is DPS deputy Ahmed Recebov Ahmedov.

One of the most important elements of our relations is the presence of our kin in Bulgaria. According to official figures from the 2011 census the population of national Turkish minority in Bulgaria stands at 588.318, in other words 8.8% of the total population.

Economic Relations:

Bilateral Trade Figures:

EXPORTS

IMPORTS

BALANCE

VOLUME

2015

1676

2254

-578

3930

2016

2383

2143

241

4526

2017 / Sept

2062

2004

58

4067

Source: TÜİK (million Dollars)

Primary Export Products : Mineral fuels, copper, plastic, electrical machinery and equipment, other machinery, metal extracts, iron and steel

Primary Import Products: Mineral fuels, mineral oils, copper, iron and steel, oily seeds, fruit, electrical machines and equipment, tree, wooden goods, plastic and bullet

Turkey is among the top 5 trade partners of Bulgaria representing an 8% trade share in the overall foreign trade of the country.

Turkish investments in the country amount up to 2 billion Dollars. In addition to two Turkish capital based banks, there are close to 1500 small-medium and large Turkish firms operating in Bulgaria. Projects completed and underway by Turkish construction companies amount up to 1.2 billion Dollars.

A Turkish Trade Center was established in Sofia in 2009 in an attempt to facilitate the activities of our businessmen and investors as well as to swiftly find solutions to their problems.

Turkish-Bulgarian Businessmen Associations Union which brings together under its umbrella the three distinct Turkish-Bulgarian Trade and Industry Chambers in Sofia, Filibe and Şumnu was established in 29 October 2012.

The last Joint Economic Commission meeting was held on 24-25 January 2007 in Sofia, co-presided by the Custom and Trade Minister Bülent Tüfenkçi.

Food, Agriculture and Farming Minister Ahmet Eşref Fakıbaba visited Sofia on 27 November 2017 to attend the 1st Agricultural Business Forum.

1.361.510 Bulgarian tourists has visited Turkey by September 2017.

Cultural Relations:

Yunus Emre Turkish Cultural Center (YETKM) and TICA office are not established in Bulgaria.