Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano and Assistant Secretary for International Affairs Alan Bersin today traveled to Istanbul, Turkey where they met with Turkish private sector representatives and local business leaders to discuss initiatives to facilitate trade and travel, while strengthening security.
"When we look at the long history of U.S.-Turkish friendship and cooperation, we find a strong foundation on which to build," said Secretary Napolitano. "Both of our nations understand the importance of partnering on multilateral initiatives to strengthen aviation security and protect the global supply chain, which are crucial to economic prosperity in our interconnected world."
Secretary Napolitano delivered remarks at a luncheon hosted by the Turkish Foreign Relations Board, underscoring the Department of Homeland Security's commitment to working closely with Turkish partners to address shared threats while facilitating legitimate trade and travel. In 2011, trade between the United States and Turkey grew by 34 percent, reaching a record high of almost $20 billion. U.S. exports to Turkey also rose 38 percent, to a total of $14.6 billion, making Turkey one of the top 25 U.S. export markets.
While in Istanbul, Secretary Napolitano and Assistant Secretary Bersin also visited the port of Istanbul, shipping facilities along the Bosphorus, and Turkish Coast Guard and Maritime Authority security operations.