Star – Enjoying warm relations on every level, Turkey and Japan are set to advance their business and commerce ties even further. The awarding of Turkey’s second nuclear power plant project to a Japanese-led consortium, the prominent role Japanese companies play in Turkey’s landmark infrastructure projects like Marmaray and Izmit Bay Suspension Bridge, along with many other Japanese ventures into Turkey in recent years show that there is more to come in terms of investments from the Far Eastern nation, according to the head of Turkey’s official investment promotion agency.
Speaking to the members of the Turkish press, the President of the Investment Support and Promotion Agency of Turkey (ISPAT), Ilker Ayci, said that new Japanese companies were monitoring investment opportunities in Turkey.
“There are around 200 Japanese companies operating in Turkey and a large number of new ones are considering their ways of entry into the Turkish market, either by acquisitions, by making greenfield investments or by opening representative offices. Many of the existing Japanese companies in Turkey are also seeking to expand their investments in the country.. ”, Ayci remarked.
The opening of the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (BTMU) in Turkey with the assistance of ISPAT will facilitate financing for Japanese ventures into Turkey, ISPAT President said, adding, “Sumitomo Rubber Industries, also with ISPAT assistance, is building a tire factory in the Central Anatolian province of Cankiri with an investment of USD 500 million. Another tire maker, Bridgestone-Sabanci JV, Brisa, has announced a production plant in Aksaray for USD 300 million."
Speaking of ISPAT’s activities to promote Turkey’s business and investment environment, Ayci said that the Agency was staging events and seminars all around the world. “We have formed teams with foreign investors who are established in Turkey to share their experiences with their compatriots in their respective countries. This way prospective investors have an idea of Turkey from firsthand”, Ayci said, highlighting Turkey’s ‘safe haven’ status for foreign investors seeking new growth markets.
A large domestic market, favorable demographics coupled with a qualified labor force, macroeconomic/political stability and a strategically important location are seen as the most attractive features of Turkey in the eyes of foreign investors.
There are over 32,000 foreign capital companies operating in Turkey, up from 5,000 in 2003.