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Turkish Agriculture Minister To Visit New Zealand

10 February 2002

Turkey's agriculture and rural affairs minister Husnu Yusuf Gokalp is to visit New Zealand, Agriculture and Rural Affairs Minister Jim Sutton said today.

Professor Dr Gokalp, his wife, and delegation arrived in Christchurch today (Sunday, February 10), for a week-long visit, Mr Sutton said. They would spend time in Christchurch, Wellington, Hamilton and Auckland looking at a range of activities, focussing on Professor Dr Gokalp's interest in pastoral farming and animal husbandry.

The Turkish delegation will also lay a wreath at the Ataturk Memorial in Tarakena Bay, Wellington.

Mr Sutton said he had invited Professor Dr Gokalp to visit New Zealand during his own visit to Turkey in October 2000.

He said he was delighted Professor Dr Gokalp had been able to take up the invitation as there were many things New Zealand had to offer that Turkey was keen to develop in its own economy, such as improved animal breeding technology.

"Turkey is a bridge between Europe and Asia. As a prospective member of the European Union, Turkey is a part of Asia in Europe and a part of Europe in Asia. This makes our links with Turkey very important."

Mr Sutton said New Zealand and Turkey had a good relationship, built on our mutual war-time history at Gallipoli.

He said there were many areas of interest for both countries, not just in agriculture, but also education, earthquake engineering, and water management.


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