As the pre-production phase of the "Made in Turkey" automobile nears completion, details of the project's background have begun to emerge. According to those in the know, government officials have interviewed a total of 15 candidates for the production of the domestic automobile, among which Turkish groups Fiba, Karsan, Kale, Sanko,Koç, BMC and Vestel are leading among the contenders, the report by the Ufuk Sandık from Turkish daily Sabah said. Groups from outside of the automotive sector are also among the interviewed candidates; including Füsa Group's owner Hüsnü Özyeğin, the most notable figure among them.
In early February this year during a speech he delivered at a meeting of the Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges (TOBB), President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan reiterated his call for a "Made in Turkey" automobile. Underscoring the issue of a domestically manufactured automobile on a number of other occasions, Erdoğan called call the members of TOBB to manufacture a fully indigenous, ‘Made in Turkey,' automobile.
The TOBB General Assembly initiated endeavors after TOBB Chairman Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu responded positively to Erdoğan's demand to produce domestic cars under the union's roof. The chairmen of chambers and commodity exchanges, the board members of the TOBB, instructed staff on what should be done to produce domestic cars.
Recalling that he has urged business people in the automobile industry many times over the last 15 years to manufacture a fully indigenous automobile, the president projected a critical perspective on the assembly line manufacture where automobile parts are sent to Turkey from abroad and assembled at Turkish factories.
"Assembly line manufacturing does not suit this nation. Automobile parts are only bought in from abroad, assembled here and then released to the market. Now this nation has the intellect and products to undertake this initiative. Securing the promise, we will aim to manufacture a fully domestic, ‘Made in Turkey' automobile under the TOBB. And as the state, we will perform our due part," Erdoğan noted.