Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey

Producing Turkey Speaks in Van

14.03.2017 / Van

The first meeting of “Producing Turkey Speaks” meetings was held Van. The meeting was attended by the Minister of Customs and Commerce Bülent Tüfenkci and TOBB, Hak-iş, TESK, Memur-Sen, TİSK, Türk-İş, Turkey Kamu-Sen, TZOB comprising Turkey-EU Joint Consultative Committee as well as directors and representatives of business community NGOs ASKON, MUSIAD, TIM, TÜGİAD, TÜGİK and TÜMSİAD.​

Speaking at the opening of the meeting, TOBB President M. Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu stated that they came to Van immediately after the Van earthquake in 2011 with Civil Society Organizations, “We shared the pain of our Van brothers and created a great aid campaign. Unity and solidarity is the mortar of this country, we all saw that day again. We are one, we are united.”

Hisarcıklıoğlu stated that they are in Van for a propitious occasion, “We are starting with Van, the first of the Producing Turkey Speaks Conferences. We did not just start here because of our love for Van. You see that the sun is rising in the East again. This city is where the sun first rises in Turkey. We are beginning to talk about “Producing Turkey” in the city where the sun rises; in the city of beautiful people; in the sea of ​​Van. I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to the citizens of Van for their wonderful participation. The more we embrace Van, the more Van embraces us. I wholeheartedly thank you all for your understanding.”

- Producer Van will speak, the government will listen

Explaining point of these meetings, the TOBB President noted, “As you know, we’ve left a difficult year behind us. Terrorist organizations such as the PKK, DAESH, and FETÖ, which are not related to each other, targeted our country during the same period. The treacherous coup attempt of FETÖ caused many troubles for my country. The region around us has become a complete circle of fire. Any other country would have folded if they went what we went through. But we stand strong. Thank Allah we have shown the world that we will not be defeated no matter how many players move against us.

Risks in the global economy are increasing. Uncertainty in the global economy began with Brexit, then with a new US President. We are entering a different era in which global balances are reforming. Those prepare will be the winners of the future. Countries which make good preparations will continue on their way as soon as the dust is settled.”

Hisarcıklıoğlu pointed out that Turkey should prepare well, “We need to bring our cities forward in the world economy. For this, we need new structural reforms and steps that will elevate us to the global level. That's why we have to tighten the ranks inside while the outside gets worse. This is the time to stand shoulder to shoulder. Workers, employers, producers and public officials should all work together.

We have a great opportunity. We have a great understanding, In the past, our politicians talked and we listened. Now the opposite is true. Our politicians say, 'Let's talk, we'll listen.' You tell us and we'll enact reforms. This is exactly what we will do today at the 'Producing Turkey Speaks' meeting. Our ministers will have their opening addresses. They will provide information on some issues. Then we will come down from the stage and you will have your say. You will express all your expectations and wishes freely. At the end of the meeting, our ministers will be back with you. They will listen to your views. We will take these results in detail later on. In other words, my dear friends, 'Producer Van' will talk; the government will listen to my quarrels.”

- We believe in the power of common reason and consensus

Hisarcıklıoğlu stated that Van would map its own path, showing the best example of state and nation meeting.

Stressing that they believe in the power of common reason and consensus, Hisarcıklıoğlu continued, “As long as we maintain this understanding, we can look forward to the future of Turkey. Arbitration brings stability. Stability increases confidence. This trust and stability lies at the heart of all the gains Turkey has achieved in recent years. In the coming new era, we must maintain confidence and stability. Our task is to make Turkey a stronger, forward facing country; making our nation more prosperous. As civil society organizations of Turkey, we will work harder and produce more for the future of our country. We believe that if we maintain unity and solidarity, we will emerge stronger from this period. Hopefully, we will place our country among the world's largest economies.”

- Minister Tüfenkci

Customs and Trade Minister Bülent Tüfenkci also stated that the “Producing Turkey Speaks” meetings - the first of which is being held in Van - which they plan to bring together the actors of the economy, will show more willingness to produce in Turkey.

Minister Tüfenkci stated that Van has significant potential in Turkish commercial life, that 5194 active traders are registered in Van and Erciş Chambers of Commerce and Industry and that 152 traders are active in Van Trade Exchange.

Reporting that the total foreign trade volume of Van has reached 97 million USD in 2016, Minister Tüfenkci said, “Given the sectoral distribution of foreign trade, the apparel manufacturing sector is the first sector in exports with approximately 6 million USD. Van trades internationally most frequently with Iran. Only in the past year, Van’s export volume with Iran reached 26 million USD.”

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