SMEs' appetite for investments enhanced with AK Party win

METIN CAN
ISTANBUL
Published 03.11.2015 20:35

Investments that have been delayed for some time due to political instability are now back on the agenda. The first to take steps to secure investments are small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The leading names from the business world who stressed that trade almost came to a halt within the last year, said the Organized Industrial Zones in particular will be revived in the coming months.

The president of the Turkish Young Businessmen Confederation (TÜGİK) Erkan Güral, which has more than 10,000 members, said both his company and other members of the confederation are raising their growth targets, as losses due to high foreign exchange rates are now starting to be offset. "There are major investment projects that have been delayed, but now with political instability lifted, SMEs are aiming to get back on schedule," Güral added. He also highlighted that a drop in the interest rates will also help revive the economy, and he called on the major banks in Turkey, which will play an important role in the economic recovery process, to help by creating more flexible offers. "Especially businessmen in Anatolia have fallen into a financial crisis due to certain regulations and applications by banks. Therefore, banks should also assume a crucial role in the economic recovery process," Güral said.

The İMES Industrial Estate, the center for SMEs in Istanbul and a region with the highest exports per kilogram rate, is also picking up, and SMEs are now pushing the button for the delayed investments. İMES President Kemal Akar also repeated the same facts about the economic recovery as Güral, noting that SMEs can finally refocus on new investment projects.

The chairman of TÜMSİAD's Konya Branch, Cemalettin Akpınar, also expressed his views about the outcome of the elections held on Nov. 1. Akpınar stressed that the public was aware of the economic crisis that emerged during the coalition governments' rule in the past. Moreover, the chaos and political instability that occurred after the elections on June 7, which caused increases in foreign exchange rates, interest rates and also raw material prices, severely damaged SMEs. "We were reminded of the importance of political stability in the five months between June and November," he said.

Sakarya, another major industrial city in Turkey, is also preparing for a leap in export-based growth. The chairman of the executive board of the Sakarya Chamber of Trade and Commerce (SATSO), Mahmut Kösemusul, said SMEs will achieve $500 billion in exports and many other accomplishments within the next four years. Furthermore, the Small and Medium-sized Industry Development Organization (KOSGEB) will be supporting projects it chooses with a special support program. KOSGEB has increased the 70 percent in financial aid it provides to women entrepreneurs to 80 percent, mostly in the areas of research, development and innovation. Currently, grants of up to TL 30,000 ($10,546) can be obtained from KOSGEB.

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