Dialogue and cooperation between Turkiye and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is important for peace and stability of the entire region, the Turkish president said on Monday.
"We do not consider the security and stability of all brotherly countries in the Gulf region separate from our own," Recep Tayyip Erdogan told a news conference at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport before leaving for a two-day visit to the UAE on the invitation of Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
"We aim to improve the momentum to bring back our relations to the level they deserve. During my visit, we will take steps that will shape the next 50 years of our friendship and brotherhood with the UAE," he said.
Erdogan, who last visited the UAE in 2013, said Turkiye and the UAE started a new era in bilateral relations with the visit of the Abu Dhabi crown prince to Ankara last November.
"The complementary nature of the two economies points to a potential far beyond the current figures. The purpose of our visit is to realize this potential quickly," Erdogan said, adding that he believes Ankara and Abu Dhabi "will go a long way in this direction."
With a trade volume nearing $8 billion, the UAE is among Turkiye's leading trading partners, he said.
"The UAE is the 10th largest market of the overseas contracting sector in Turkiye," Erdogan said. The Gulf country also makes "significant contributions to the dynamic investment environment" in Turkiye, he added.
"Turkish construction companies in the UAE have so far undertaken 141 projects worth $13 billion," the Turkish president elaborated.