Turkey's main priority is to ensure a permanent recovery on the production front in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, the country's technology and industry minister said on Wednesday.
Addressing a virtual meeting organized by the Foreign Economic Relations Board, Mustafa Varank said the expectations of the real sector are improving, and the last two weeks have also seen positive signs on normalization from the pandemic.
"Electricity consumption in the organized industrial zones started to rise in the beginning of May," he said, adding ,that all main automotive factories are operating, and there is a recovery in textiles.
The food, chemical, pharmaceutical and packaging industries have emerged stronger, he said.
"Many manufacturers talk about investment and export opportunities, and we're focusing on the steps to realize this potential," Varank said.
- Digitization cushion
The minister urged companies in Turkey to invest in digitization in order to make their businesses more resistant to calamities such as the coronavirus pandemic.
"At this point, we are working to facilitate access to digital technologies and to expand the smart industry, supporting the companies with incentives and grants in their digital transformation," Varank said.
According to him, in addition to job security in the transition to the "new normal," the development of production capabilities is also extremely critical.
"The outbreak reminds us how important self-sufficiency is," he said.
Varank said that when the country meets its raw material and intermediate goods requirement from domestic sources, it becomes more resistant to external shocks.
In the days to come, he said, there will likely be a transition from the unipolar world order to a multipolar world order, and power balances will shift. "So we need to focus on getting a big slice of this division."
Turkey, Varank said, enjoys advantages thanks to its geographical location, logistics networks, non-disruptive supply chain, emergency response capacity, and crisis management ability.
"We want to spread the advantages we have in the defense industry, automotive, textile and white goods to more sectors," he said, stressing that Turkey could be one of the world's leading regional supply centers in the new era.