The Emiratis gifted Erdoğan $50 billion

United Arab Emirates President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, right, welcomes Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Abu Dhabi on July 19. (Photo courtesy of the Presidency of Republic of Turkey)

The main goal of the third Presidential term of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan seems to be achieved 60 days after the second round of elections in his country as he met yesterday with the strongman of the United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

Wrapping up a tour with visits to Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, the Turkish president secured a powerful stimulus injection of liquidity that is dramatically changing the landscape for Turkey's faltering economy.

In particular, Erdoğan returns with $50 billion deals in his luggage from the Emirates to Ankara, solving the unprecedented impasse, to which he had been led by his international isolation, but also by the collapse of the Turkish lira.

After all, the fact that he returned to the negotiating table, playing a pivotal role in Sweden's accession to NATO, shattered the image of a distant and threatening regional power that Turkey had built until that moment, sending, among other things, a signal to the international markets .

Although Erdoğan made sure to make some initial communications with Gulf countries during the first days of his re-election by gauging moods, the prospect of Sweden joining the NATO with the blessings of Ankara brought Turkey closer to its "modern face", unlocking tensions with the Gulf countries too.

Following these, the president of Turkey and the strong man of the UAE signed 13 agreements yesterday with a value exceeding $50 billion, while announcing the creation of a strategic council. Furthermore, the two sides agreed to set up a High Level Strategic Council chaired by the leaders.

As for the policy fields that Turkey and the United Arab Emirates, these include the deepening of their cooperation in areas such as: energy, transport, infrastructure, logistics, e -commerce, finance, health, food, tourism, real estate, construction, defence, artificial intelligence and advanced technologies.

The total amount of the 13 agreements that have been signed amounts to $50.7 billion, about a quarter of the Greek GDP. The agreements, as noted by Al-Monitor, come in addition to the trade agreement signed in March, which is valued at $40 billion.

At the same time, the Turkish president was accompanied by a large delegation of the cabinet, including Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan and Defence Minister Yaşar Güler, as well as about 200 businessmen.

In his statements, as reported by Anadolu, Erdoğan expressed his joy at visiting Abu Dhabi again. He also emphasised that the relations between the two countries will have reached the level of strategic partnership with the joint memorandum of understanding that will be signed.

He even announced a Trade and Investment Forum for the fall, while pointing out the presence of the UAE Air Force in the international exercise Anatolian Eagle 2023 with four F16s and 80 personnel.

This is Erdoğan's first regional visit since his re-election in May, with the aim of revitalising his country's economy.

After years of rivalry, Turkish-Emirati relations have improved significantly since 2021 as part of a "charm offensive" by Turkey to mend relations with former regional rivals such as the Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Israel.

The goal, to a large extent, is to attract foreign capital, as Turkey faces a difficult economic situation.

Total trade between the UAE and Turkey (excluding oil) reached $19 billion in 2022, up 40% from the previous year and 112% from 2020 to 2021. The March deal is also set to increase UAE exports to Turkey by 21.7%.

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