Textile and clothing industry
This branch of industry is the most important in terms of value added, number of employees and export rate (30%). The main sales markets for textiles are Russia, Italy and Germany. It is noticeable that China has risen to 13th place among the customer countries (in 2008 it was 25th). Clothing made in Turkey is sold to Germany, Great Britain, Spain and France.
Large production facilities are located in Istanbul, Bursa, Denizli, Adana, Gaziantep, Karamanmaras, Kayseri, Antalya, Mersin and Malatya with a total of 3 million employees. The clothing industry is characterized by medium-sized companies with a lot of foreign investments, while the textile industry works almost exclusively with Turkish capital. Cotton, wool and synthetic fibers are produced, which are processed into fabrics or textiles for internationally known brands.
The industry got into enormous difficulties due to global competition. Cheap producers like China and India put the Turkish market in great distress, causing closures and lower production rates. In some cases, Turkish companies also relocated their production to the Far East. This led to an increase in the unemployment rate in a sector characterized by precarious income and insecure employment.
The textile and clothing sector was now faced with the challenge of coping with the crisis by changing production and marketing strategies or by merging medium-sized companies. The orientation towards higher quality, modern design in connection with fast implementation and good logistics created a differentiation of the market in 2012. Double-digit growth rates have been achieved since 2013.
According to franciscogardening, Turkish designers can now also be seen on international catwalks.
Automotive and its supplier industry
The Turkish automotive industry expanded strongly: Currently working approximately 400,000 employees at 17 manufacturers and 4,000 suppliers. The production and export rate (3 out of 4) of vehicles, especially in the light vehicle sector (cars, pick-ups and light commercial vehicles), is increasing rapidly. Their share in total exports should reach 15%. Production of 4 million vehicles is targeted for 2023. The local share of added value in vehicle production is to be increased from 56% to 77% in the foreseeable future with the support of subsidy measures.
Automobile production is a relatively young industry. Fiat (Tofas) and Renault founded joint ventures in Istanbul and Bursa in the 1960’s. Today, manufacturers such as Renault, Ford, Fiat, Hyundai, Toyota and Honda have had plants in Turkey for several years. As a rule, these are run as joint ventures with local partners. According to Invest in Turkey, they invested over $ 12 billion between 2000 and 2014. According to analysts’ calculations, three of the country’s top five exporters belong to the automotive industry.
Cars, minibuses and intercity buses, trucks and tractors are produced in Istanbul, Bursa, Ankara, Aksaray, Izmir and Izmit.
The iron and steel industry, as well as the rubber, plastic, glass and automotive supplier and automotive accessories industries, with around 200 foreign capital investments, also benefit from the expansion of production capacities. Their investments are increasing and predict an upturn in the supplier industry. The associated logistics are currently being expanded. Germany is the largest export recipient of automotive parts.
The production and sales of electric cars are still in their infancy, but the plans are ambitious. The first Turkish electric vehicle is expected to be on the road in 2021.
More than 50,000 people work in the electrical industry, mainly in Manisa, Bursa, Izmir and Istanbul. The industry is expanding primarily into telecommunications, computers and consumer devices. It not only produces for local manufacturers such as Arcelik, Vestel, Beko and Profilo, but also for international electronics companies such as Toshiba, Sanyo, Siemens, Bosch, Nokia, JVC, Phillips and the Italian group Merloni. Today more than a third of the TV sets sold in Europe come from Turkey, even if the domestic market is currently weak. The export of refrigerators and stoves far exceeds the import. However, the manufacture of electrical systems had to cope with a slight decline.
International companies in the IT industry are discovering Turkey as a regional center. In order to further promote development, the government wants to set up special technology parks for the industry, so-called IT valleys.
Western Turkey with the Marmara region and the Aegean Sea (Greater Istanbul, Bursa, Izmit) is strongly developed. The Istanbul region with around 20% of the population generates 40% of the total added value. The south-east and east of the country are underdeveloped, often marked by bitter poverty and economic backwardness.
In Central Anatolia, with the rise of the “Anatolian tigers”, the area around Konya and Kayseri has developed economically – far from infrastructural conditions or the availability of raw materials. With the help of a strict work ethic and entrepreneurial leadership based on religious foundations, a religious-conservative middle class has developed. Many of these emerging companies have trade relationships with the Arab world and the Near and Middle East. They increased export values by 6 times, while EU exports only increased by 2.5 times.
The province of Gaziantep is also one of the climbers, which promotes economic commitment through business-friendly policies and the designation of industrial zones and thus contributes to the development of the area. Gaziantep orients itself in its trade relations with nearby Iraq.