Business News Turkey November 2023
Amazon opens logistics centre in Istanbul
Amazon’s first logistics centre in Turkey, located in Istanbul’s Tuzla district, has been opened with an official ceremony. According to Stefano Perego, Amazon’s Vice President of North America and EU Customer Fulfillment & Global Operations Services, since 2018 his company has invested more than TRY 5.2 bn in Turkey, where it currently employs over 1,000 people. Richard Marriott, Amazon Turkey Country Manager, reported that the number of local SMEs selling products on Amazon has increased by more than half to over 45,000 in 2022, and that export sales have surged more than 60 per cent, approaching EUR 500 mn. Marriott underlined that Amazon will continue to innovate to provide SMEs in Turkey with the opportunity to increase their sales and grow their businesses by creating branding and employment.
Oct. 4, 2023
TÜV AUSTRIA TURK commissions lab in Kocaeli
TÜV AUSTRIA TURK, which provides certification, training and inspection services, has commissioned an OCM laboratory for used mineral oil analysis in Kocaeli following an investment of EUR 2.5 mn. The purpose of this laboratory is to detect early malfunctions, optimize maintenance, increase productivity, ensure safety and environmental compliance by constantly monitoring and analysing the oils of industrial equipment. The testing laboratory will be catering to both domestic and international customers.
Oct. 19, 2023
E20 Investment acquires interest in Lucky Fish
E20 Investment, an international investment company based in the UAE, has become the majority shareholder of the Turkish aquaculture producer Lucky Fish Co. by purchasing 70 percent of its shares from Mediterra Capital. Sultan Al Jaberi, Group CEO of E20 Investment, commented that “Lucky Fish’s dedication to quality and responsible practices mirrors our own values, making this partnership an exciting and promising venture”. Established in 1986, Lucky Fish specialises in European seabass and gilt-head sea bream, employing around 450 people.
Oct. 31, 2023
Ford Otosan commissions renewed factory
Ford Otosan, a U.S.-Turkish joint venture, has put into operation its Yeniköy factory in Kocaeli, which has been redesigned with a EUR 2 bn investment. The production capacity is scheduled to increase to 405,000 commercial vehicles by 2025, consisting of the Transit, Tourneo Custom, and E-Transit Custom models as well as a commercial vehicle model of Volkswagen. Numerous innovative production technologies such as advanced robotic systems, end-to-end management with artificial intelligence, photovoltaic glass walls and solar tracking systems have been employed in the factory.
Nov. 5, 2023
Zurich Sigorta acquires MAPFRE Yaşam
Zurich Sigorta, the Turkish subsidiary of the largest Swiss insurer, and MAPFRE Sigorta, the subsidiary of Spanish MAPFRE Group, have reached an agreement on the sale of life insurance company MAPFRE Yaşam. As Zurich Turkey CEO Yılmaz Yıldız said, the acquisition of MAPFRE Yaşam is Zurich Group’s fourth investment in Turkey, thereby entering the life insurance market. He added that their next goal will be entering the private pension system, and that their investments in the Turkish market will continue.
Nov. 6, 2023
Toyota produces Turkey’s first PHEV
Production of the first Turkish-built plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV), the second-generation Toyota C-HR, has kicked off at the Sakarya plant. With an investment of EUR 308 mn for this new model, Toyota’s total investment in Turkey has reached EUR 2.5 bn. The factory has an annual production capacity of 280,000 units, most of which is for hybrid cars.
Nov. 6, 2023
MAN invests in Ankara plant
The Test and Product Development Centre established by MAN in its Ankara plant with an investment of EUR 45 mn has recently become operational. MAN Truck & Bus CEO Alexander Vlaskamp stated that standard tests have been carried out on trucks as well as on buses at the Centre. The company started investing in Ankara in 1966 by building trucks, and has been manufacturing buses there since 2004. The factory, which exports 95 percent of its bus production, plans to start producing electric buses in 2 years.
Nov. 8, 2023
Erdoğan cancels Israel visit plan
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced that his country, via El Arish Airport in Egypt, has despatched medical and humanitarian aid material for the needs of the people of Gaza, as well as 25 medical personnel for the treatment of the injured. While emphasizing that actions targeting civilians can never be excused, Erdoğan declared that Hamas is not a terrorist organization, but rather a liberation and mujahideen group that struggles to protect its lands and citizens. He added that he has cancelled his plan to visit Israel.
Oct. 26, 2023
Turkey celebrates 100th anniversary of the Republic
The 100th anniversary of the foundation of the Turkish Republic has been celebrated throughout Turkey. Parades in the streets and celebrations in the squares were held in all 81 provinces. On this solemn occasion, President Erdoğan visited the “Anıtkabir”, the complex containing the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the Republic, laying a wreath at his sarcophagus.
Oct. 29, 2023
Main opposition party has a new leader
At its 38th Ordinary Congress, Turkey’s main opposition party Republican People’s Party (CHP) elected the Chairman of its Parliamentary Group, Özgür Özel (49), as new leader. Since none of the candidates managed to secure an absolute majority in the first round, the vote went into a run-off. In the second round, Özel received 812 votes, prevailing over 74-year old incumbent Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, whom only 536 delegates voted for. Özel, who speaks German and English, is Deputy for Manisa and a pharmacist by profession.
Nov. 5, 2023
EU Commission adopts Turkey Report
Within the scope of the 2023 Enlargement Package, the European Commission has presented its Turkey Report. In its press release, the Commission stated that “Türkiye remains a key partner for the European Union and a candidate country, but accession negotiations remain at a standstill since 2018, in line with the decision of the European Council. The country has not reversed the negative trend of moving away from the European Union, and it pursued accession related reforms to a limited degree.”
Nov. 8, 2023
Turkish Central Bank continues to raise interest rate
The Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey has raised its policy rate (the one-week repo auction rate) – from 30.00% to 35.00%. The bank stated that “monetary tightening will be further strengthened as much as needed in a timely and gradual manner until a significant improvement in inflation outlook is achieved.”
Oct. 26, 2023
Both exports and imports decrease in September
In September 2023, the exports of the Turkish economy decreased by 0.5%, and imports by 14.6% over the same month last year (YOY). With exports of USD 22.5 bn and imports of USD 27.5 bn, the trade deficit was cut by 47.8% to USD 5.0 bn during the same period. In September, Germany continued to be Turkey’s biggest export partner (USD 1.8 bn), following by the USA (USD 1.2 bn), and Iraq (USD 1.2 bn). China remained the country with the most imports to Turkey (USD 3.7 bn), ahead of the Russian Federation (USD 3.1 bn), and Germany (USD 2.4 bn).
Oct. 31, 2023
In October 2023, consumer prices in Turkey increased by 3.43% compared to the previous month, while the CPI went up 61.36% YOY. The biggest monthly price hike took place in clothing and footwear (13.73%), followed by housing (7.54%). The only decrease among the main product groups occurred in transportation (-0.18%). The highest annual price increase was in hotels, cafés and restaurants (94.12%). The domestic producer price index (D-PPI) increased by 1.94% monthly, and by 39.39% YOY
Nov. 3, 2023
Unemployment continues to decrease
In September 2023, approximately 3,168,000 people in Turkey aged 15 and older were officially out of work. The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 9.1% was 0.1 points lower than in the previous month, and 1.0 points down YOY. The labour force participation rate registered as 53.2% in total, and 35.6% for females.
Nov. 10, 2023
Industrial production continues to increase
In September, Turkey’s industrial production index increased by 4.0% YOY while the manufacturing industry recorded a plus of 3.7%. The highest increases in the manufacturing industry category were reported in the product groups “other transport equipment” (104.2%), “computer, electronic and optical products” (66.7%), and “tobacco products” (35.8%), with the largest decreases occurring in the product groups “printing and reproduction of recorded media” (-25.5%), “leather and related products” (-14.2%), and “wearing apparel” (-9.9%).
Nov. 10, 2023
Overview of Monthly Data