Science, Industry and Technology Minister Faruk Özlü said the number of technoparks in Turkey rose to 71 along with the Antalya Organized Industrial Zone (OIZ) and the Cappadocia Technology Development Zone, stating that 56 of them run the research and development (R&D) and innovation activities of the companies, while the construction and structuring processes continue in the remaining 15 units.
Speaking to Anadolu Agency (AA), Minister Özlü elaborated on the status of the technoparks in Turkey.
Pointing out that university-industry cooperation is very important for the Turkish industry to work in an export-oriented manner and to compete in international markets, Özlü said academic knowledge will enable new technologies, which will, in turn, lead to the development of new products.
Özlü stressed that the technoparks are one of the country's most important interfaces that serve this purpose, adding that these units, whose numbers are increasing day by day, are contributing more and more to the innovation and technology ecosystem.
Özlü stated that the establishment of technology development zones within the scope of the OIZs are supported in order to enable the industry to access the technologies it needs, to carry out the R&D innovation activities more effectively and to adapt the existing technologies to their own processes more easily.
"With the establishment of technoparks that bring together theoretical knowledge and practice in OIZs, the technologies developed in these areas will be transformed into products more efficiently," Minister Özlü continued. "In this context, 14 technology development zones have been established in OIZs so far and this number has increased to 15 after the decision to establish the Cappadocia Technology Development Zone was published in the Official Gazette."
Özlü underlined that the Antalya OIZ, which houses about 270 factories in its scope, has great potential for entrepreneurs and researchers who want to realize R&D and innovation projects in cooperation with the industry. Informing that the Antalya OIZ Technopark will provide industrialists with the capacity and experience of the Antalya Bilim University (ABU) and the Akdeniz University to implement the R&D projects, as well as design support from the ABU Faculty of Fine Arts and Architecture, Özlü said industrialists will be encouraged to develop new and different products with the support provided by the faculty members and students in product design. "Thus, it is planned to employ a minimum of 350 R&D staff and more than 100 support personnel in the Antalya OIZ Technopark in the next 3 years," he added.
Minister Özlü noted that every year technology development regions measure their performances in terms of different variables such as economic size, technology-based new company formation and employment, university-industry cooperation, and intellectual property rights and exports, suggesting that they are striving to increase the number of technoparks and their qualifications in this frame.
Indicating that the decision to establish the Cappadocia Technology Development Zone was published in the Official Gazette as a result of the activities run in this scope, Özlü said they aim for 30 entrepreneurial companies to operate in the Cappadocia Technology Development Zone in three years and to employ 100 people in these companies, while also creating job opportunities for 250 R&D personnel in the region at the end of the 10th year. "With the establishment of the said region, the businesses operating in and around the region will be encouraged to set up R&D units and thus employ R&D personnel," he noted.