Turkish and Tatar presidents met in the Tatar capital of Kazan on Saturday.
Turkey's President Abdullah Gul and Tatarstan's President Mintimer Shaimiev had a tete-a-tete meeting at the Presidential Palace in Kazan, and then chaired a meeting between delegations.
Gul is the first Turkish president ever to visit Tatarstan.
The two presidents discussed bilateral relations and mutual investments.
"Relations with our brother Tatar people is contributing to and boosting our relations with Russia," Gul told a joint press conference with Shaimiev.
Gul said that Turkey opened its first consulate general in the Russian Federation in Tatarstan, which indicated how special Turkish-Tatar relations were.
Tatarstan was developed in plane, helicopter and truck manufacturing, and petrochemical industry, Gul said.
The Turkish president welcomed relations between Turkish and Tatar businessmen, and pledged to continue supporting them.
"I am sure we have opened a new page with this visit, and our relations will further improve," Gul also said.
Shaimiev said that Turkish companies were at the top of foreign firms investing in Tatarstan, and that more than 100,000 Tatar people visited Turkey for a vacation last year.
The Tatar president wished that flights would be increased between the two countries, and said that Gul and he agreed to cooperate in the universiade summer games Kazan would host in 2013 and universiade winter games Turkish province of Erzurum would host in 2011.
Shaimiev said that Turkey and Tatarstan should come together, and show the world how a strong regional cooperation could be made.
"Tatarstan wants to make use of Turkey's experiences, and improve multi-dimensional cooperation with Turkey," Shaimiev said during Tatar-Turkish Business Forum in the Tatar capital of Kazan.
The first ever Turkish president visiting Tatarstan, President Abdullah Gul also attended the forum.
Shaimiev said that Turkish-Tatar trade volume reached 3 billion USD in 2008, and two countries should first think of how they could keep the trade volume at this level in 2009 due to the global economic crisis.
"Our aim is to first reach the same trade volume, then to raise it," he said.
After the press conference, the two presidents visited Blagoveshensky Church and Kul Serif Mosque.
The mosque was demolished during the Russian occupation of Kazan in 1552, but rebuilt by a Turkish firm some time ago.
Last Mod: 15 Şubat 2009, 11:24