Botswana and Turkey Bilateral Relations

Botswana and Turkey share long-standing cordial bilateral relations dating back to 1981, when the two countries established formal diplomatic relations. Turkey was covered by the Botswana Embassy in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and Botswana by the Turkish Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya.

Since 1998, Turkey accredited its diplomatic mission in Pretoria, South Africa to cover Botswana. In 2011, Botswana decided to accredit its Permanent Mission in Geneva to cover Turkey. These changes are expected to further strengthen the friendly relations between the two countries and peoples.

So far, there have been three (3) visits to Turkey by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Hon. Mr. Phandu T. C. Skelemani. Firstly, Minister Skelemani led the first-ever trade and investment mission to Turkey in January 2009. The second visit was in May 2010, during which the two countries signed the General Agreement of Cooperation and the Agreement on Trade, Economic and Technical Cooperation.

The General Agreement is aimed at deepening and broadening the scope of bilateral cooperation from political, economic to cultural areas. The Trade Agreement is meant to focus on promoting trade and economic relations. Since the coming into force of the Trade Agreement, two (2) Batswana have benefited under this Agreement.

The two (2) Agreements were mostly motivated by the outcome of the First Africa-Turkey Cooperation Summit that took place in Istanbul, Turkey, in August 2008. The Summit agreed that in order to promote trade and investment between Africa and Turkey, the two sides should initiate and conclude appropriate legal instruments that would ensure:

                         i)        economic and technical cooperation;

                        ii)        mutual promotion and protection of investments; and

                       iii)        avoidance of double taxation.

Minister Skelemani also headed the Botswana delegation to Turkey in September 2012 for the First Session of the Botswana-Turkey Joint Commission for Cooperation. The Joint Commission committed to expand bilateral trade and investment between the two countries by commencing negotiations on the Agreement on Avoidance of Double Taxation, facilitating the establishment of a Joint Business Council, encouraging trade missions between the two countries, participating in trade and tourism fairs and exchanging trade information. The two countries also deliberated on technical cooperation and capacity building in the fields of standardisation and metrology; science and technology; development of small and medium enterprises (SMEs); mining and energy; agriculture; transport and communications; constructing and consulting services; health; and provision of scholarships.

During the Joint Commission, Minister Skelemani held bilaterial meetings with His Excellency, President Abdullah Gül; the then Deputy Prime Minister, H.E. Bekir Bozdag; Minister of Foreign Affairs, H.E. Ahmet Davutoglu; Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, H.E. Taner Yildiz; and Minister of Health, Prof. Dr. Recep Akdag. Issues discussed include, opening of a resident diplomatic mission in Gaborone, crisis in Syria and appointment of an honorary consul in Turkey.

Trade between Botswana and Turkey

According to data between 2003 and 2010, goods exported to Turkey include: other bovine and equine leather, tanned; protective metal toe caps; other soups and broth; and used personal effects. Major goods imported from Turkey include: textiles; other rectangular and square aluminium plates, sheets; and acrylic/modacrylic synthetic staple fibres.

The below table depicts volume of trade between Botswana and Turkey for the period 2003 to 2010

Year Total Imports (Botswana Pula) Total Exports (Botswana Pula) Balance of Trade(Botswana Pula)
2003 4,329,898 1,223 -4,328,675
2004 1,506,671 0 -1,506,671
2005 3,245,166 87,700 -3,157,466

Abolition of Visa Requirements

The Government of Botswana has exempted the nationals of Turkey from all visa requirements to enter Botswana with effect from April 2013, as a gesture of friendship towards Turkey and its nationals. However, Batswana need  visa to enter Turkey and they can get visa at the Turkish Embassy in Pretoria, South Africa. 

For nationals of other countries residing in Turkey who require visa to enter Botswana, application for visa can be made through filling out the form below and sending it to the Mission, either by e-mail to, fax or post:


To facilitate assistance to Batswana in the countries of accreditation by the Permanent Mission, all Batswana living in Turkey are required to complete the form below and send it to the Mission either by email to, fax or post: