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This week I am leading a delegation of business people to Turkey in order to promote Cape Town as an investment destination and to grow the market for locally produced goods and services in Turkey.

Connectivity between Cape Town and Turkey has been improved through the recent commencement of flights by Turkish Airlines between Cape Town and Istanbul.
This provides an opportunity for business people in each location to do business with considerably more ease, while also increasing the number of seats bringing tourists to Cape Town.

The Turkish Airlines flights to Cape Town are a catalyst for increased economic opportunities for people in Cape Town.

It is important that local business people create connections with counterparts in Turkey in order to exploit these opportunities fully.The delegation, which includes five businesses from the ICT, agri-business and textile sectors, will visit Istanbul, Izmir and Bursa.

In Izmir, a city which Cape Town has a sister-city agreement with, the Cape Town businesses will spend time sourcing new business at the Izmir International Trade Fair, while Cape Town will be promoted as an investment destination to forums and meetings hosted by the Izmir Development Agency, the Aegean Chamber of Commerce, and the Mayor of Izmir.

In Bursa and Istanbul, there will be further forums at which Cape Town will be promoted.

The businesses on the delegation will also have numerous individual meetings with Turkish businesses from their respective sectors.

Cape Town is an open economy ready to do business with the world. The relationship between Izmir and Cape Town has been cultivated over a number of years now, and we had the honour of hosting a substantial delegation from Izmir in our city earlier this year.

It is a relationship that is worth building, as Turkey is at the centre of a considerable potential market for Cape Town-produced goods and services.

Cities are at the forefront of enabling economic growth and job creation, and hence I am committed to assisting Cape Town businesses find new markets for their products.

The delegation includes trade and investment officials from Wesgro.

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