Turkey to set up a new Consulate General in Chengdu, Southwest China’s Sichuan Province to expand its diplomatic presence in China, Office of Foreign Affairs Committee of Sichuan Provincial Committee of the Communist Party of China announced on its official website on Wednesday.

The office said the Chinese government has reached an agreement with Turkey on the establishment of the consulate general in Chengdu in the form of exchange notes. The consular district will cover Southwest Sichuan Province, Chongqing Municipality, Guizhou Province and Yunnan Province.

The New Consulate General will be the third one for Turkey established in Chinese mainland.

China and Turkey will celebrate the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties this year. Turkish Ambassador to China Abdulkadir Emin Önen said on May 27 on Chinese Twitter-like social media platform Sina Weibo that Turkey would like to take this opportunity to further strengthen bilateral cooperation.

Aside from the upcoming new consulate general in Chengdu, Turkey will also inaugurate the Beijing Yunus Emre Turkish Cultural Center, the ambassador said. Önen suggested the two countries should align their development strategies and strengthen cooperation.

According to the Sichuan foreign affairs office, the number of foreign consular offices in Chengdu has reached 21, ranking third in the Chinese mainland.

China and Turkey, located at the east and west ends of the Asian continent, are the starting and ending point of the ancient Silk Road and the Maritime Silk Road of Asia, said the office.

The establishment of the Turkish Consulate General in Chengdu will help Sichuan better integrate into the Belt & Road Initiative. It will also promote the cooperation between Sichuan and Turkey in the fields of investment, trade and people-to-people exchanges, the office noted.

Cooperation between the two nations extends across trade, investment, advanced technologies and civil aviation, and has gained momentum in recent years. In 2020, the bilateral trade between the two countries reached $26 billion, according to Önen.