TURKISH DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER BABACAN RECEIVES USTDA COUNTRY OF THE YEAR AWARD
WASHINGTON, DC (December 7, 2009) – The U.S. Trade and Development Agency is proud to announce the Republic of Turkey as the recipient of its 2009 Country of the Year award. This award is a reflection on the success of the Agency's program in Turkey supporting their development priorities. USTDA Acting Director Leocadia I. Zak presented today’s award to His Excellency Ali Babacan, Turkey's Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State. The award ceremony took place at the Office of the Unites States Trade Representative. Also present at the ceremony were the Honorable Gary Locke, U.S. Secretary of Commerce and Ambassador Ron Kirk, U.S. Trade Representative.
"USTDA is delighted to add Turkey to the distinguished list of high-performing partners who have earned the Agency’s Country of the Year award," said Acting Director Zak. "This important award reflects the strong economic relationship between Turkey and the United States and I am very proud that USTDA has been able to contribute to this relationship."
Turkey has a long history of engaging USTDA in the early project planning stages for many of its infrastructure development needs. This has allowed the Agency to play a vital role in advancing these priority projects. As a result of this cooperation, the Agency has been able to open the door for U.S. industry to play a significant role in Turkey’s continued economic development, which has resulted in the export of more than $630 million in U.S.-manufactured goods and services.
For example, in May 2009, the Germincik geothermal power plant began commercial operation. The concept and planning process for the facility originated in a feasibility study funded by USTDA. It is the largest plant of its type in Turkey, providing over 40MW of clean energy. Important in this effort is the role of the U.S. private sector, which exported $22 million in U.S.-manufactured goods and services during construction
Building on this past success, USTDA and Turkey's Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources launched the U.S. – Turkey Clean Energy Partnership in April 2009. This Partnership is designed advance our cooperation in the clean energy sector by supporting energy efficiency, solar energy, and new environmentally-friendly coal gasification projects.
The U.S. Trade and Development Agency advances economic development and U.S. commercial interests in developing and middle-income countries. The agency funds various forms of technical assistance, feasibility studies, training, reverse trade missions and business workshops that support the development of a modern infrastructure and a fair and open trading environment. USTDA's strategic use of foreign assistance funds to support sound investment policy and decision-making in host countries creates an enabling environment for trade, investment and sustainable economic development. In carrying out its mission, USTDA gives emphasis to economic sectors that may benefit from U.S. exports of goods and services.