TOBB - Türkiye Odalar ve Borsalar Birliği

Türkiye Odalar ve Borsalar Birliği

TOBB lobbying attack in the US

02.12.2017 / Washington / USA

Following strained relations between Turkey and the the US, TOBB has sent a delegation to the USA. Led by TOBB President M. Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu, the TOBB delegation met with important figures from the world of economics and politics. TOBB President Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu said, “We will continue our collaborative work with the US Chamber of Commerce, which we are currently in talks with, to address the issues and opportunities for bilateral trade and investment, particularly with regard to the free trade agreement.”​

The delegation led by TOBB President Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu, in the US to develop commercial relations and support foreign lobby activities of Turkey, held talks with members of the US State Department, the Ministry of Commerce, the Chamber of Commerce and the Representatives Assembly of the US Congress. Hisarcıklıoğlu's trip to the United States, including Washington and Chicago, was part of a memorandum of understanding agreement signed between the TOBB and the US Chamber of Commerce, signed in Ankara in October with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan acting as witness.


Evaluating the four-day visit, TOBB President Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu said, “The friendship and alliance as well as important problems and disagreements which exist between Turkey and the USA have been emphasized in all our meetings. At the same time, we have seen the will to cooperate in resolving problems and disagreements. There is a need for all relevant parties to engage in mutually constructive dialogue and take concrete steps in a positive direction. Turkey-USA friendship is very important for the NATO alliance and the region in which Turkey exists, as it is for the people of both countries. We will continue our collaborative work with the US Chamber of Commerce, which we will be addressing, particularly with regard to the bilateral trade and investment issues, as well as the free trade agreement.”


- Four main subjects


Hisarcıklıoğlu emphasized that the USA visit focused on four main themes, “The details of the implementation of the TOBB-US Chamber of Commerce Memorandum of Understanding and the joint activities to be carried out; the possible effects on the visa application and the business world; training to be conducted by TOBB ETU in Washington D.C. as well as the Turkish Trade Centers to be preliminarily set up by TOBB in Chicago.


- Who did they meet with?


The TOBB delegation met with US Assistant Secretary of State Elisabeth Millard, US Trade Department - USTR President and Chief Negotiator for International Trade Robert E. Lighthizer and Turkish Ambassador to Washington D.C. Serdar Kılıç, as well as US Congress Texas Pete Session, North Carolina Representative Ted Budd and President of CSIS from leading think tanks of USA, Dr. Hamre.


The delegation also participated in the workshop organized by the US Chamber of Commerce. On the last day of the visit, the TOBB delegation moved to Chicago and held talks in regards to the Turkish Trade Center, the preliminary work for which being conducted by TOBB.


Hisarcıklıoğlu's visit was accompanied by TOBB Vice Chairmen İbrahim Çağlar and Ender Yorgancılar, TOBB Board Member Cengiz Günay and TEPAV Director Prof.Dr. Dr. Güven Sak.

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