Turkey country brief

Turkey is a key partner for Australia.

Key engagement

Gallipoli commemorations, counter-terrorism cooperation, G20 and MIKTA forums.

Bilateral relations

Turkey and Australia have a productive, warm and developing relationship, with substantial dialogue across a wide range of issues including counter-terrorism.

Australia and Turkey are both members of the G20 and the MIKTA (Mexico, Indonesia, Korea, Turkey and Australia) forum, an informal grouping that addresses diverse international challenges. Our relations are underpinned by strong people-to-people links and annual high-level visits.

Foreign policy

Turkey is a sophisticated foreign policy actor, and in recent years has been a major player in neighbouring Iraq and Syria in fighting the threat posed by Islamic State and other terrorist groups. Turkey is currently hosting almost 4 million refugees fleeing the conflict on its southern borders. It has significant economic, security and cultural links with Europe, as a member of the NATO alliance and as a candidate state for EU membership. Australia and Turkey work closely together in Afghanistan on the NATO-led Resolute Support Mission to help build security capacity in the country. For more information, see the Turkey Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.

Australia’s foreign policy is guided by the Foreign Policy White Paper.

Fast facts

  • Turkish visitors to Australia (2018) — 8,400
  • Australian visitors to Turkey (2018) — 33,900
  • Resident Australian population born in Turkey (2016 census) — 32,000
  • Australian residents of Turkish descent (2016 census) — 73,000
  • Turkish work and holiday (2017-18) — 115
  • Turkish students in Australia (2018) — 1,937

High level engagement

  • 2018 — Minister for Home Affairs, the Hon Peter Dutton MP visited Turkey for the Anzac Day commemorations
  • 2017 — Then-Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon Julie Bishop MP, visited Turkey for the Anzac Day commemorations. Then-President of the Senate, Stephen Parry visited Turkey
  • 2016 — Speaker of the Turkish Parliament, Ismail Kahraman, visited Australia

Agreements with Turkey

  • Extradition Treaty
  • Work and Holiday Visa Arrangement
  • Defence Framework Agreement
  • MOU on counter-terrorism and organised crime
  • Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement
  • Air Services Agreement
  • Double Taxation Agreement

Public diplomacy

The Australian Embassy in Ankara manages a public diplomacy program focusing on promoting Australian business and trade, and strengthening people-to-people links. In recent years, activities have focussed on the major contribution Turkish migrants have made to Australia. In 2018, the Embassy celebrated the 50th anniversary of formal bilateral relations.

Through the Direct Aid Program, Australia uses small grants to work with local communities in Turkey to reduce poverty and achieve sustainable development. In 2018-19, there was a strong emphasis on women’s empowerment, education and livelihoods programs for Syrian refugees, with a focus on provincial areas.

Australian Embassy in Ankara

Uĝur Mumcu Caddesi
No: 88, 7th Floor Gaziosmanpaşa
Ankara 06700
Facebook: Australia in Turkey
Twitter: @AusAmbTurkey

Australian Consulate in Istanbul

Harbiye Mahallesi, Asker Ocağı Cad
Süzer Plaza No:15,
34357 Şişli/Beşiktaş/İstanbul

Australian Consulate in Çanakkale

Boğazkent Mahallesi,
Pınar Sk. No:225
17110 Kepez Belediyesi/Çanakkale Merkez/Çanakkale
Twitter: @AusConCanakkale

Economic diplomacy

The Australian Embassy in Ankara and Consulates in Istanbul and Çanakkale drive Australia’s economic diplomacy agenda with assistance from Austrade’s Istanbul Office.

Turkey was Australia’s 30th largest merchandise trading partner in 2017-18. Goods trade dominates the relationship, especially Australian exports in gold, cotton and coal. The main imports from Turkey were goods vehicles, and fruit and nuts. Investment flows heavily towards Turkey with Australian companies investing in infrastructure, mineral exploration, construction and agri-business. Developing awareness of respective trade and investment opportunities in Turkey and Australia is a priority.  

More economic and trade information can be found in the Turkey country/ economic fact sheet.

Business

Mining is a growing sector in Turkey and there is potential for increased exports in Australian mine technology and services. Education is another area of potential growth.

Austrade’s Istanbul Office aims to attract foreign direct investment into Australia, and promotes the Australian education sector.

Austrade in the Turkey

Last Updated: 5 March 2019