The Turkish government is supporting the companies to develop new projects in their industries and we have gathered some of them here. In this article, you will read about the latest projects of Turkey in 2020 in the following sectors: energy, environment, transport, industry, automotive, and innovation.
Energy, Environment, and Transport
Solar panels: The Minister of Energy and Natural Resources announced that the potential for rooftop solar panels is 4,000-5,000 MW. To date, the Ministry has registered 900 applications from industrialists for a total capacity of 800 MW and about 1,300 applications from individuals for a total capacity of 10 MW.
Construction of a boron fuel production plant: The Minister of Energy and Natural Resources announced that a boron fuel production plant, in which Turkey holds more than 70% of the world’s reserves, would be built within two years.
“Kanal Istanbul”: During the Congress on Intelligent Cities in Ankara, the Turkish President indicated that Dutch, Belgian, and French companies were interested in the “Kanal Istanbul” project. As a reminder, the agenda of this project is accelerating, and calls for tenders will soon be launched. The final version of the environmental impact study has been adopted by the Ministry of Environment and Urban Planning. Requests for modifications had been made to the Ministry of the Environment as well as to the CIMER (Communication Centre of the Presidency of the Republic).
Industry, Automotive, and Innovation
Industrial production up in November: According to TürkStat, the industrial production index recorded a 5.1% rise in November compared to the same month in 2018 and a 0.7% increase from the previous month.
Automotive: The production of the automotive sector amounted to 1.46 million vehicles produced in 2019 (a decrease of 6%). The production of passenger vehicles decreased by 4% and that of commercial vehicles by 9%. Over the same period, sales on the domestic market fell by 23% to 419,909 vehicles. However, this figure is above market forecasts (350,000), thanks to a recovery in the last quarter of 2019.
Startup/Technology: The Turkish startup Getir, which offers a fast delivery service for groceries via an application (4 million users and nearly 55 M USD of turnover in 2018), has raised 38 M USD of funds from a group of Turkish and foreign investors led by venture capitalist Michael Moritz, a partner of Sequoia Capital. Getir, created in 2015 and based in Istanbul, Ankara, Izmir, Izmit, and Bursa, intends to develop its activities abroad, initially in London, Sao Paola, Paris, and Mexico City.
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Around 1.35 million houses were sold in Turkey in 2019 as the Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK) announced on Jan. 15.
House sales decreased by 1.9% or 26669 units in 2019 compared to the previous year, according to data from the Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat).
Approximately 511,700 houses were sold for the first time from January to December, while the rest were second-hand sales.
Istanbul – Turkey’s largest city in terms of population and one of its main tourist centers – has taken the most significant portion of house sales with 17.6%, a total of 237,675 houses in the year.
Official data showed that the capital Ankara and the Aegean region of Izmir achieved 132,486 (9.8%) and 79,221 (5.9%) of the total housing sales, respectively.
Mortgage sales of houses reached 332,508, representing a 24.7% share of all sales for the same period.
In December 2019, house sales increased by 47.7% to about 202,000 units – 75,480 new and almost 126,600 used – on an annual basis.
Houses Sold to Foreigners
Last year, around 45,500 houses were bought by foreigners, an increase of 14.7% compared to 2018.
Istanbul was the leading city for foreigners with 20,857 property sales in 2019, while the Mediterranean seaside resort, Antalya (8,951 sales), the capital, Ankara (2,539 sales), and the northwestern region, Bursa (2,213 sales) followed.
Iraqi citizens were the primary buyers of Turkish properties, with 7,596 house sales. Iranians, Russians, Saudis, and Afghans were among the top five.
In December 2019, foreigners bought about 5,300 houses, an increase of 16.2% on an annual basis. Nearly 900 houses were purchased by Iraqis, 76 by Iranians, and 362 by Russians.
Interest Rates Have A Negative Impact on House Sales
Ahmet Erkurtoglu, deputy head of the Association of Entrepreneurs of the Anatolian part of Istanbul, said: “Housing sales have exceeded the 100.000 barrier in recent months and broke through the 200.000 barrier last December for the first time,” he said.
Lower interest rates for housing loans and deposits have had a positive impact on house sales, he underlined.
The Turkish central bank has gradually lowered interest rates to 12% from 24% in eight monetary policy meetings in 2019 which helped houses to be sold in Turkey.
He estimated that the construction sector would concentrate on urban transformation projects in 2020 and will build new houses worth up to 1 million Turkish liras (about $169,500).
“We can again sell between 1.2 and 1.3 million houses in 2020, and we aim to sell 60,000 houses to foreigners in 2020,” he noted.
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The chemical industry in Turkey, which set a record in 2019 with the export of 20.6 billion dollars, became the second most exported sector in the past year. The chemical industry has drawn attention to the increased export performance, exporting more than 3 billion dollars in 2019, among the industries increasingly growing 18.54 percent of exports to Turkey and could be a growing industry.
The chemical sector, which stands out as the locomotive sector that exports to most countries among all industries, became the leader in this field with its exports to 208 countries and regions in November. The sector’s exports in terms of quantity in 2019 amounted to 26 million 539 thousand tons, with an increase of 35.83%. Spain, which is one of the countries with the highest export volume in the chemical industry, ranked first with exports of 1 billion 62 million dollars while the Netherlands ranked second with exports of 1 billion 32 million dollars, and Iraq ranked third with exports of 1 billion 12 million dollars.
Assessing the year-end exports of the chemical industry, the President of İKMİB, Adil Pelister, said: “Our chemical industry exports broke an all-time record in 2019. We have been very successful in exceeding our $20 billion targets with exports of $20.6 billion. Also, among the sector’s exports of more than 3 billion dollars in 2019, we were the fastest-growing sector of Turkey, with export growth of 18.54 percent. Our sector’s export in terms of quantity in 2019 was 26 million 539 thousand tons, with an increase of 35.83%. We beat our monthly export record with 1.94 billion dollars of exports in October 2019. During 2019, every month in a row as Turkey’s second-largest export sector, we have been leading our second permanent goal. In the chemical industry in Turkey, by taking a share of 11.44 percent of Turkey’s total exports, we have brought significant added value to our country. In 2020, the first sector, while maintaining our position as the second most exported sector of Turkey, Turkey’s exports, and we aim to increase our contribution to growth. Besides, we plan to conduct our activities more broadly following the roadmaps we will create for our sub-sectors. »
“Chemicals is a strategic industry with high growth potential.”
Stressing that the chemical industry is growing every year and that its growth potential is high, this is a strategic sector. As İKMİB, we successfully represent the Turkish chemical industry worldwide, with 16 subsectors of plastics, paint, cosmetics, medicine, rubber, organic, and inorganic chemicals. In this context, during 2019, with around 500 exporter companies, we participated in 14 national trade fairs and 11 international trade fairs. We visited 4 organization information stands, conducted five sector trade missions, 12 recruitment committees, 4 TTG (Turkey Promotion Group), three seminars, and continue in the framework of 7 international competitiveness development projects (URGE). We organized 3 URGE delegations and 3 URGE training and six workshops related to different sectors. In addition, we held our 8th event on the R&D projects market, the fourth of our IKMIB Export Stars award ceremony, and the Industrial Design Competition. »
The 2023 chemical export target is $30 billion.
Noting that they aim to export more than $22 billion in the chemical industry by 2020, Pelister said: “As part of our country’s 2023 targets, we aim to increase our sector’s exports to $30 billion and achieve a 13 percent share in the $226.6 billion export target. To achieve this export target, our Ministry of Commerce is forwarding our requests to the relevant ministries. This includes: facilitating our exporters’ access to financing, ensuring the digital transformation of the chemical industry, energy costs, and TCS, creating container lines, increasing fair participation rates, and investing in petrochemical plants.
The Star Refinery facility, opened in 2018 and operating in the petrochemical sector, has made a significant contribution to our industry in terms of chemical exports. Our chemical exports are also positively affected by the investments made in our industry. We need six new petrochemical plants. We expect investments in petrochemicals and pharmaceuticals to begin. However, it is essential for our exporters that efforts to update the customs union agreement with the European Union are completed as soon as possible. As exporters of chemicals, we will continue to contribute to the development and growth of our country. »
Spain was the most exported country in 2019
In analyzing the distribution of chemicals and chemical products exports by country in 2019, Spain ranks first with exports of $1.62 billion, while the Netherlands is second with exports of $1.32 billion and third Iraq with exports of $1.12 billion. Italy, Egypt, Germany, the United States, Greece, England, and Malta are in the top ten.
EU countries ranked first in chemical industry exports in 2019
In 2019, the European Union ranked first among the countries in which the chemical industry exports were made, with an exportation of 8.51 billion dollars and an increase of 27.24%, while the countries of Asia and the Near and Middle East were second with a rise of 3.9 billion dollars and an increase of 24.56%. Other European countries were third with exports of 2.66 billion dollars, and a rise of 17.16%, North African countries were fourth with exports of 1.85 billion dollars and an increase of 7.78% and other Asian countries with exports of 1.36 billion dollars and 1%, It ranked fifth with 12 decreases.
Most of the “plastics and products” were exported
The “plastics and products” product group ranked first in the chemicals and chemical sector’s exports in 2019, with an increase of 4.12% and exports of $6.12 billion and had a 29.67% share of the industry’s total exports. The group of “mineral fuels, oils, and mineral products” with an increase of 85.78%, exports of 6.08 billion dollars and a share of 29.46% and an increase of 0.91%, exports of 1.82 billion and 8%, The group of “inorganic chemicals” followed with 82 actions. The other most exported product groups in the chemical industry in Turkey were respectively “rubber, rubber products,” “essential oils, cosmetics and soap,” and “pharmaceuticals.”
The Central Bank of Turkey cut its benchmark interest rate by 75 basis points, beating most economists’ forecasts and risking a possible liquidation of the pound.
The Bank of Ankara cut its one-week lending rate to 11.25% from 12%, according to a decision taken on 15th January. Turkey’s primary interest rate, minus inflation of 11.8%, is now negative, making assets denominated in lira less attractive.
In its reasoning, the central bank cited improved inflation prospects, weak investment, and weak global economic activity.
As the President Erdoğan said earlier Thursday that the central bank had another opportunity to cut rates at today’s meeting.
Economists were almost evenly divided on whether the central bank would cut rates, according to polls conducted by Reuters and the state-run Anadolu news agency. Those expecting a cut more commonly predict a 50-basis point cut.
President Erdoğan claims that higher interest rates are inflationary, an opinion that is in contradiction with conventional economic theory. Consumer price inflation in Turkey accelerated from 8.6% in October but is less than half the levels reached in the aftermath of the currency crisis.
Economists predict that inflation could slow to around 9.5% in 12 months, according to a central bank survey released earlier in January 2020.
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