Turkey and Ukraine should focus on spearheading joint project development and tech research, Turkey’s industry and technology minister said on Thursday.

“From now on, we should focus on getting quick results in the work we’ve initiated towards joint project and product development and joint technological research,” Mustafa Varank said in a meeting with Oleh Urusky, Ukraine’s vice prime minister for strategic industries.

This would transform the countries’ “strategic cooperation into a more systematic and institutionalized structure,” he said in the Turkish capital Ankara.

Varank said the countries’ close historical, cultural, and geographical ties were strengthened by a strategic partnership announced in 2011.

Calling the Ukrainian official’s visit a milestone in forging new cooperation in critical industrial sectors, Varank said the program focuses on strategic sectors such as defense, aviation, and shipbuilding.

For his part, Urusky said new projects will help boost cooperation between Turkey and Ukraine.

He underlined the importance of the cooperation eliminating bureaucratic red tape.

“We are not only neighbors with Turkey, but also friendly and strategic business partners,” Urusky added. 

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