ITIB Türkiye Hindistan Ekonomi Konuşması

Dr. Burak Akçapar 12.01.2012
Indo-Turkish Business Association (ITBA) has established itself as a bridge between businessmen in Turkey and India since 2005.

It benefits from effective leadership thanks to Mr. Teyfik Aydınlıoğlu and Mehmet Ali Şeker and their able colleagues. It also benefits from excellent contacts in both India and Turkey.

Turkey and India are global economic success stories.

Goldman Sachs estimates that Turkish economy would be larger than 5 out of 7 members of the G7 including Germany, France, Italy, Canada or Japan by 2050. It will be 9th after UK. India will be third.

Turkey has come out strong from the global economic crisis.

What Turkey has done:

Before 2008: Fiscal adjustment. Price stability. Banking reform. Social security reform. Health care reform. Public finance reform.

During 2008-2009 crisis:
Entered the crisis with strong public finance and strong banking sector. Political stability. Strong political will. Medium term program. Fiscal consolidation. Prudent monetary policy. Effective use of macro-prudential measures.

2009 saw negative growth. 2010 plus 9%. 2011 close to 8%. Thereafter around 5% expected.
Income distribution has been improving with increases in households income.
Turkish economy while smaller than India’s, per capita income is about 7 times bigger.

There is tremendous potential yet to be tapped between Turkey and India.

India exported around 251.4 billion dollars worth of goods and services from march 2010 to march 2011.

Turkey’s imports from India accounted for merely 1.1% of this volume with 2.76 billion dollars.
Worse, India imported 370 billion dollars worth of goods and services between march 2009 to march 2010. Turkey’s exports to India (607 million) accounted for only 0.17% of India’s imports. Zero percent.

Balancing the trade relationship will open new vistas.

The figures for last year shows us that the trends continue. The overall trade volüme has expanded significantly in 2011. We have passed 7 billion mark compared to 4 billion in 2010. This is a truly significant jump.

However, it basically means that India has exported much much more to Turkey. India’s exports grew by more than 2.5 billion dollars. Turkey’s exports by less than 100 million.
This picture is probably not sustainable over the longer haul.

Steps have to be taken by both sides very soon.

1. Turkish market is more liberalized than the Indian market. This impacts on our business relations and there needs to be some bilateral correction in that regard.

The efforts to conclude a comprehensive economic cooperation agreement must be given a strong and urgent push. The basis for these negotiations have already been laid and we need to press ahead.

2. Continuation of close political level attention is needed. The visit by the Vice President of India last year was a very timely intervention and has boosted Turkish awareness of India significantly. We are hoping to have both the Honorable President and the Honorable Prime Minister of India to return the visits of their counterparts in Turkey in 2012. The same goes for a range of Ministers as well.

3. Awareness has to be generated about the potential. Turkey and India are in fact very compatible partners.

On the investment side:
There are very important success stories that need to be highlighted.

On the Turkish side, Turkish companies like Fernas, Söktaş, Çelebi, Wintech, Hidromas and others Show the trust Turkey puts in India.

There are success stories in India as well. Actually around 100 of them. The recent announcement in İstanbul by the Birla group worth 500 million dollar investment in the production of Viskon.

There are others.

I invite Indian companies to invest in Turkey. Your investment will be facilitated. It will be rewarding. You will not regret your decision.

I see opportunities in all areas of investment. But let me highlight a few:

- almost all kind of stainless steel products,

- engine and its spare parts, other otomotive spare parts, chemicals and textile chemicals for example; polipropilen,

- polietylen, polyester and senthetic fibre and yarn, leather products.

You will have strong support and incentives.

On the trade side: Turkey’s main export items to India include:

Natural or Cultured Pearls, Precious or Semi-precious Stones, Precious metals and articles, imitation jewelry etc.,
Boilers, Machinery and Mechanical Appliances,
Poppy Seeds, Metal Ores and Scraps, Inorganic Chemicals

Continue with all that but when the production and exportation structure of the Turkish economy as well as the consumer habits in India are taken into consideration, there is a considerable potential in the import to India of: Automotive and autoparts, Natural stones, Textile machinery, Chemical industry (Petrochemicals, inorganic and organic chemicals, fertilizers, paints, harmaceuticals, soaps and detergents, synthetic fibers, essential oils, cosmetics and personal care products) Plastic products, Jewelry (precious metals and stones), Glass and glassware products, Leather products, Electrical equipment and electronics, Construction materials.

Construction sector is currently the second largest sector in India after agriculture. Investments in this field constitute 11% of GDP of the country.

Today, Turkish construction and engineering companies are second only to China in the world. They are most able to design, erect, build and operate all kinds of civil and industrial projects. Turkish companies would be your natural partners in the full range of contstruction projects including in building: dams, hydroelectric and thermal power plants, industrial plants, airports and seaports, large scale petroleum and natural gas pipelines, fertilizer plants, petrochemical complexes and refineries, motorway, tunnels, large housing projects, hotels, touristic resorts, and so on.

Ladies and gentlemen,

India and Turkey are natural partners and I think 2012 will be a landmark year in our bilateral relations.

We have the tourism sector taking the lead in taking our relationship to unparalleled levels.

The Travel Agents Association of India will be holding its 60th jubilee convention in Istanbul this March.

But business, including tourism business, is overall the strongest growth area in Indo-Turkish relations.

The Turkey-India Friendship Treaty starts by confirming that “there shall be perpetual peace and friendship between” the two countries.

Sixty years hence, the practical content of our relations as well as the people-to-people friendships are set to develop.

Whatever your business is 2012 is the year to think Turkish.

ITBA, ISPAT and my Embassy are prepared to help you through the wonderful journey of investing in, visiting, and buying Turkish.

Thank you.

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