ARAM EKİN DURAN – SEVDA YÜZBAŞIOĞLU
ISTANBUL - Referans
Turkish business in Africa is looking forward to high growth as the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey, or TOBB, announced plans to establish organized industrial zones in Africa.
�All Turkish firms interested in operating in Africa should start regional feasibility studies immediately,� said Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu, chairman of TOBB, during the Turkey Africa Cooperation Summit in Istanbul on Monday.
Hisarcıklıoğlu said the organized industrial zones would be established through the Turkey Africa Private Sector Program and would include business development centers for providing training and administration to industrial enterprises.
�By organizing the Turkey Africa Private Sector Program, we aim to help integrate the African economy into the world economy.�
Turkey Africa Chamber of Commerce
�We aim to spread Turkey's organized industrial zone culture in African countries,� said Hisarcıklıoğlu. �The operations should be launched in order to establish the Turkey Africa Chamber of Commerce immediately and render the business relations permanent.�
Hisarcıklıoğlu said the private sector program could contribute significantly to Africa in the sectors of construction and energy, while there were also opportunities for cooperation in customs, informatics and finance. He said the organized industrial zones contribute to urban planning, the transfer of experience between Small and Medium Size Enterprises, or SMEs, and an efficient usage of energy.
�Also, implementing Turkey's advanced agricultural techniques in Africa may play an important role in overcoming famine on the continent,� he said.
Increasing trade to $50 billion by 2012
�Our long-term vision is to enhance cooperation with Africa in the sectors of finance, industry, agriculture, tourism and energy,� said State Minister Kürşad Tüzmen during the opening ceremony of the summit, which was organized by the Foreign Economic Relations Board. �Our chief target is to establish partnerships with African countries for mutual benefit.�
Tüzmen said the aggregate trade volume between Turkey and Africa totaled $19 billion last year and the aim was to enhance the trade volume to $50 billion by 2012.
�The value of the projects undertaken by Turkish contractors in Africa reached $22 billion last year,� he said. �Turkey supports the economic integration process between the Mediterranean Union, North Africa and the European Union.�
�Furthermore, developed countries should give up their protective policies on food products. Africa's potential for food production should be utilized more fairly,� Tüzmen said.