Speaking at the Turkey Young Businessmen Confederation (TÜGİK) Assembly 2013 meeting, TOBB President M. Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu, emphasizing that the future is in the hands of the youth, said that the youth and women need to have more presence in both councils and boards.


Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey

​We want to see more women and youth in our councils and boards

25.05.2013 / Afyonkarahisar

Speaking at the Turkey Young Businessmen Confederation (TÜGİK) Assembly 2013 meeting, TOBB President M. Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu, emphasizing that the future is in the hands of the youth, said that the youth and women need to have more presence in both councils and boards.

TOBB President Hisarcıklıoğlu stated that there are three important factors in economy, the first being choosing the right target markets, going to untapped markets. Hisarcıklıoğlu stated that more presence is necessary in especially the American continent and the Far East.

Pointing out the importance of the effective use of resources, Hisarcıklıoğlu said, “It is very important to make correct use of our resources. Let me give you an example. Let’s not make any additional investments; only increase the efficiency to a level on par with Germany. Let us increase the participation of women to the level of South Korea. Do you know what will happen? We go straight to being the 9th largest economy in the world. We have a young population. The average age is 29.5. 65% of Turkey’s population is under the age of 30! We have the youngest population of all European countries. We must be aware of this great power.”

Stating that the third important factor is increasing the number of entrepreneurs, Hisarcıklıoğlu said, “Both women and young entrepreneurs must be organized. That is why I am always happy to meet with young business people.”

- The three ways to succeed as an entrepreneur

Recalling the results of a study published in Forbes, Hisarcıklıoğlu said:

“According to the study, the wealthy have 3 traits in common. The first is that those who aren’t afraid to lose win. Koton’s owner Gülden Yılmaz, against all odds, made a small store into a global brand: Working day and night, with no capital, taking risks to achieve success. The second trait is innovation. You should begin each day wondering what new thing you can do. In the past you needed money to be an entrepreneur. Now you have plenty of opportunity with a computer in front of you. The third factor is the right marriage. It may sound strange, but the third most significant trait of billionaires is the fact that they’ve made the marriages. Risky enterprises require the support of a spouse.”

TOBB President Hisarcıklıoğlu said: “Half of our population is women but they only make up 6% of the business community. The mentality that our daughters should be educated only to sit at home is wrong. Was not the wife of our Prophet, Revered Hatice a merchant? Our daughters must be entrepreneurial like our sons.

The way to prosper is though encouraging our youth and daughters to be more entrepreneurial.

I have taken a saying of Abdülkadir Konukoğlu’s father as a principle for myself. He says: ‘The trick of it is honesty’. Why do people cheat? To win. Then you must be honest to win.”

- TOBB’s activities

Providing information regarding the activities of TOBB, Hisarcıklıoğlu said: “In recent years, we have achieved a great many successes. Where we had no personnel who could speak foreign languages, today we are undertaking international projects. We have started the 5-star chamber system. 131 chambers and exchanges are accredited and on par with the best in Europe. We have been elected to the vice presidency of both the largest business organization in Europe, Eurochambres, as well as the largest business organization of Islamic countries, the Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI). We have been elected to the presidency of the Jerusalem Arbitration Center. Today, our chamber and exchange structure is being shown as exemplary by the OECD. The world points to OTBB as an example.

Last year, with the changes to the Turkish Trade Law, we freed the private sector from a burden of 6 billion TL annually. 18 instances of prison sentences have been removed. We have prevented these.”

The biggest problem in Turkey is not unemployment but rather, the lack of vocation, said Hisarcıklıoğlu and emphasized the error of the do-it-all mentality. Hisarcıklıoğlu stated that in order to achieve a high quality and prevent lack of vocation, they have established UMEM Ability’10 project and he went on to provide information on the project.

- The 2023 vision

Stating that there is a great goal being worked towards by 75 million people, Hisarcıklıoğlu said, “We want to among the 10 largest economies of the world. We have ten years to achieve this great goal. We must work hard; we have no time to lose. Right now, Turkey is a shining star. Lands to our west and south are struggling with crises. 15 prime ministers and 4 state presidents have come and gone in the last 3 years.”

Following President Hisarcıklıoğlu’s speech, TÜGİK President Erkan Güral provided information regarding their confederation which is represented by members of 500 different sectors and professions, numbering ten thousand; he went on to emphasize that they greatly value the commercial relations between their members.

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