Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey

Hisarcıklıoğlu met with the Zonguldak business community

21.12.2019 / Zonguldak

The Union of Chambers of Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) President M. Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu, speaking at the Zonguldak Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCI) Centennial Anniversary Summit event that Zonguldak would become a center of attraction again, declaring that the Western Black Sea would be the gateway to the world and celebrated the centennial anniversary of the Chamber.​

The meeting, held on the occasion of the centennial anniversary of Zonguldak CCI, was attended by TOBB President M. Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu, Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan, Zonguldak Governor Erdoğan Bektas, Zonguldak CCI President Metin Demir, Zonguldak CCI Council Speaker Zafer Sağlam as well as numerous chamber and commodity exchange presidents from surrounding provinces and districts. At the end of the meeting, successful businessmen of the province were also presented with awards.

Hisarcıklıoğlu made the following assessments about Zonguldak in his speech here: “We know Zonguldak as a heroic city that joined the National Militia in the front lines in the War of Independence. We know it as a city of earnest hard work. We see the city as one of the cities where industrial culture was first formed. In such an important city, we have a century-old institution that has taken on the role of opinion leader of the economy, and our Zonguldak Chamber of Commerce and Industry works with determination and diligence in a manner befitting the history and importance of Zonguldak. They’re working to add value to the city. President Metin Demir is young, excited and professional. Zonguldak CCI works just like a project factory. He is also a colleague in Ankara. We work together at the CCI Council. We're taking advantage of your experience. He represents you in Ankara in the best way.”

- What is required in Zonguldak

Hisarciklıoğlu stated that he is happy to come together in such beautiful ceremonies with entrepreneurs who work day and night to produce, export and provide employment, and said that they deserved these awards. “They contribute to both the Zonguldak economy and the Turkish economy. In fact, prizes or not, in my eyes, all our entrepreneurs are individual stars. May Allah make your achievements permanent.”

TOBB President Hisarcıklıoğlu, noting that Zonguldak was a city that was only mentioned with regards to its underground resources in the past, but now the picture has changed, “Thanks to my entrepreneurial brothers, there is now trade, there is tourism, there is education,” Hisarcıklıoğlu said, touching on the work to be done in the city, “There is the Filyos Valley Project (Port, Industrial Zone, Free Zone) and the sea route will become more active with Filyos. There's an airline-road-sea-rail, but they need to be used more effectively. The airport should be open to domestic flights. You are doing the right thing to diversify the economy and you are establishing a greenhouse specialized OIZ. President Metin Demir is making great efforts in this regard. I hope you'll get Zonguldak to do it soon. There is an important potential in nature tourism. One important issue that will add value to Zonguldak is the Fair. There's been a serious development, especially in vitreous. You can also do what İnegol does in furniture.”

- What's been done in the last few months

Hisarcıklıoğlu emphasized that a difficult period has been passed, and said that the business community feels it the most. Stating that in this process, their primary task is to make sure to gather the problems of the community, of its members as well as their proposals and convey them to the executives in the government, Hisarciklıoğlu said, “Recently, many arrangements have been implemented with the demands you have conveyed to us.”

Hisarcıklıoğlu spoke about the issues that they have been working on in the last few months and the issues that have been implemented:

“Our biggest complaint was regarding the banks. On the initiative of our government, public banks stepped in here. They've cut interest rates a little bit and started lending new loans. Campaigns launched in housing and automotive provided a morale boost for our members.

With the recently announced decision, commercial loan interest rates in public banks will hopefully fall to single digits. We also continue to vouch for you with KGF. In the last three years, we have vouched for the 400 billion TL in loans of approximately 800,000 members.

With Respite Credits, we have provided 100,000 members with 12 billion TL in cheap loans. Our second complaint at the banks was high POS commissions. There used to be no limit. Now an upper limit of 1.6% has been imposed.

In addition, as a result of your demands, followed up by our chambers and TOBB, the number of installments in credit card shopping in various sectors has been increased.  Again, another issue TOBB has been working to address was commercial credit insurance. Public Insurance led the way. Currently, 16 insurance companies provide commercial credit insurance.

Vocational Education was very important for our community. Here, we took a very important step with our Ministry. We worked with our previous rector Mahmut Özer. In every province, starting with a single vocational high school, Chamber-Exchange will be paired, having a say. That way, there's going to be qualified employees that you need.

Another important issue is the Vocational Proficiency Certificates. Under TOBB, we established MEYBEM - Vocational Qualifications and Certification Center. Vocational qualification certificates are mandatory for 143 professions in hazardous and very hazardous groups. Additionally, it is compulsory in the dealerships, real estate and service drivers.

Another issue we had trouble with was the judicial system. Commercial Courts also lasted 3-4 years. We've got the mediation system coming in. First in employee-employer disputes, and then in all trade disputes, mediation has become mandatory. Now 70% of disputes are resolved without going to court. If you don't agree with the arbitrator, don't go to court, come to the TOBB Arbitration. It's faster and it's cheaper. Here, in five months at the latest, commercial disputes are resolved. All you have to do is write 'TOBB Arbitration is authorized in case of dispute,’ in your contracts.

Finally, our community is achieving another historic first. Turkey's automobile project which President Erdoğan has demanded of us. We found five braves and we got to work. President Erdoğan will show prototypes to the public. We should all be proud and happy about this.”

- “We are hopeful for the future”

Stating that besides the good news, of course there are difficulties, Hisarcıklıoğlu emphasized that everything can be overcome through unity. Hisarcıklıoğlu noted that they have been through many difficulties in the last 30 years, “But we continued on the road. We got over each bump, we won't be stuck now.

I believe in the future of my country. Because I know our potential, what we do, what we can do. I trust Turkey's entrepreneurial power. Keep one thing in mind. Fighting doesn't solve your problem. It is solved by common wisdom and dialogue. Grace and prosperity in unity. As long as we don't alienate each other. Then you will see, we will move our country forward together.”

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