Launched to expand the e-commerce sector in Africa, Ecom@Africa is a big project that will make a significant contribution to Turkey's exports, logistics and economy. Since e-commerce is expected to reach $75 billion in Africa in a short period of time, the Turkish Post and Telegraph Organization (PTT) aims to grab a share from that market in order to boost Turkey's exports.
In an interview with Anadolu Agency (AA) published yesterday, PTT General Manager Kenan Bozgeyik recalled that the Universal Postal Union (UPU) 2016 congress was held in Istanbul, saying that the congress highlighted the strategy of improving and expanding e-commerce in the world. Expressing that they put forward the necessity of increasing the level of development in Africa where 1.2 billion people live during the congress, Bozgeyik noted that they also demonstrated their will to make use of great opportunities on the continent. He also underlined that Turkey and the PTT, in their capacity as the UPU's administrative council chair, have prepared various plans and projects in this area.
Expressing that they have long worked on the Ecom@Africa project, which has been initiated to develop and spread e-commerce in Africa, Bozgeyik said that the project is being led via Turkey.
Underlining that Ecom@Africa is a great project that will significantly contribute to Turkey's exports, logistics and economy, Bozgeyik continued, "So, we will have opened a market, which has an annual transaction volume of $75 billion, up to the world via Turkey. African countries can carry out exports via Turkey. We have taken the first step in Tunisia which we signed an e-commerce cooperation agreement with."
Bozgeyik also indicated that bilateral talks and negotiations with other countries, which they have determined to be hubs, have been continuing, and that the negotiations with Ethiopia and Côte d'Ivoire are in the final stage. Pointing out that they have been running talks in cooperation with the UPU and that the PTT has been leading the talks, Bozgeyik said, "This is an honor for Turkey. The project will not only promote e-commerce in the world and Africa, but will also contribute to our economy."
Bozgeyik iterated that the rate of e-commerce used is 15 percent in developed countries and around 8 percent in the world, adding that there is a considerable potential for rise in Africa.
Highlighting that Africa has a great potential regarding the spread of both traditional commerce and e-commerce, Bozgeyik said, "It is foreseen that the market share Africa can achieve in e-commerce will be $75 billion in a short period of time, and even exceed this figure in the next two to three years. We will have opened this market up to the world via Turkey. What matters for us is to have the lion's share of this pie and become one of the most e-commerce players in the world." Emphasizing that the government makes major contributions to achieving the 2023 vision goals, Bozgeyik continued that the PTT eyes Africa's $75 billion worth e-commerce potential. "This will not be limited to the PTT alone. The entire e-commerce of Africa will be actualized via Istanbul Airport which will be a hub," he told.
Remarking that Africa will carry out its exports and imports from Istanbul Airport via the PTT, Bozgeyik said that the PTT continues efforts so that Turkey can have a share of Africa's e-commerce under the Ecom@Africa project.
In addition to the PTT, Istanbul Airport, Turkish Airlines (THY) and Turkish private companies will be involved in the process.
"Thanks to the project, we will both deliver Africa's products to the world via Istanbul and the products demanded by Africa from the rest of the world to Africans via Istanbul. This is a project built entirely on a win-win principle," he concluded.