Published On: Sat, Nov 9th, 2019

Will Turkey and UK become strategic or trade partners after Brexit?

UK has been dealing with the Brexit issue for a long time and in fact it has been the country’s number one problem for quite a while. If and when Brexit is accomplished the UK will certainly have to review its economic relations with many countries.

Turkey on the other hand has strong commercial relations with the UK and the new relations to be updated between 2 countries after Brexit are of particular concern for Turkey.

Some experts comment both countries would continue to collaborate on strategic issues trade to be in the first place after Brexit, adding however Turkey should not be seen as a strategic partner by UK, due to political vulnerabilities of this country.

They say, “Turkey has many of the features of a fragile state – military coup attempts, stuck in a civil society, politicized bureaucracy, confusion of state and government institutions, polarization in society, judicial process and question marks on the rule of law, riots in the southeast of the country, regional instability and frequent economic crises which turn out to be a consistent threat for the state. Therefore, it would not be wise to see such a country as a strategic partner”.

Actually, during President ERDOGAN’s visit to London in 2007 (PM at the time) Prime Minister Gordon Brown described the relations between 2 countries as strategic partnership and this expression has been widely used since that time referring to relation between 2 countries.

Nevertheless, experts say that the strategic mutual interests of two countries does not necessarily mean said countries are “partners”, adding by defining a country which exhibits authoritarian qualities as a democratic country, democratic shortcomings of Turkey should not be swept under the carpet. Therefore the increased trade volume between Turkey and UK means Turkey is a good trading partner for UK and not a strategic partner.

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