UPDATE 2- Turkey eager to use local currencies in trade: FM

ADDS MEETING OF CAVUSOGLU WITH MADURO

By Fatih Hafız Mehmet

CARACAS, Venezuela (AA) – Turkey is eager to use local currencies in bilateral trade deals to counter efforts by the U.S., Turkey’s foreign minister said late Friday

"We are so keen actually to use local currencies in our bilateral trade, not only between Turkey and Venezuela, but also between Turkey and other countries," Mevlut Cavusoglu said at a joint press conference in Caracas with his Venezuelan counterpart Jorge Arreaza.

Cavusoglu said since the U.S. administration has been using the dollar as a tool to attack other countries’ economies, many countries have been trying to use local currencies in trade.

He added that Turkey is not against the currency of any country, but currencies should not be used as instruments to attack other nations' economies.

Cavusoglu said Turkey also became a target recently and that is why it experienced fluctuations in its currency.

"But we have been standing very strong and taking all measures to make our economy more stable," he said.

Regarding Turkish-Venezuelan relations, Cavusoglu said Turkey and Venezuela’s presidents are "like brothers".

"Venezuela has been passing through a critical period, and we are doing our best to support it," he said.

Cavusoglu said economic cooperation between the two countries has deepened and both countries have benefitted from that.

He said Turkish Airlines has also discovered the potential of Venezuela and increased the frequency of its flights to Caracas to seven times a week.

Venezuelan Foreign Minister Arreaza, for his part, said Turkey and Venezuela have brotherly relations.

Arreaza said Turkey supported Venezuela when the latter was under an economic blockade.

He said Turkey and Venezuela share the same positions on international relations and politics.

Arreaza added that Venezuela signed agreements with Turkey in important fields such as tourism, fisheries and agriculture.

Two agreements were signed during Cavusoglu’s visit.

Later, Cavusoglu also met with Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.

After the meeting, Cavusoglu held a press conference with Vice President Delcy Rodriguez.

Speaking to reporters, Cavusoglu said Turkey and Venezuela will increase solidarity as they survive through tough times.

"We will stand by the Venezuelan state and people under all circumstances," he added.

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