Guest writer İbrahim Ethem Tokgözlü, an Expert in the Sectoral Activities Unit at the Presidency of the Republic of Türkiye Investment Office shares about Türkiye‘s offer in new mobility.
A resilient, fast-growing economy, Türkiye offers business-friendly policies, deep talent pool and global market access at the nexus of Europe, Asia and Africa to attract sustainable FDI. With its geographical location, manufacturing power, young and dynamic population and logistics infrastructure, Türkiye is at the heart of industrial production in the region. And, global companies are using Türkiye as an R&D, manufacturing, export, and management hub. Especially for mobility sector, Türkiye is the second largest vehicle supplier to the EU right after the UK. It is ranked fourth in Europe and thirteenth in the world according to the data of 2021.
The globally-integrated nature of the Turkish automotive industry with a yearly export volume of around 25 billion USD provides plenty of opportunities for multinational companies such as Ford, Toyota, Renault, Hyundai, Mercedes, and Fiat to use Türkiye as a manufacturing hub. These global OEMs, together with numerous global suppliers, have built up a very competitive mobility ecosystem in the last 60 years.
The mobility industry is going through a transformation where fundamentals are changing; the future of mobility is electric, autonomous, and connected. It can be easily seen that it translates into challenges as well as opportunities for the industry players, and countries. In the short span of a few years, OEMs in Türkiye have invested over $ 10 Billion in order to increase their production capacities and to modernize their facilities. Announced investment decisions are a clear signal of the country taking necessary steps for electrification and digitalization of its mobility industry.
EV projects are supported through tailor-made R&D and manufacturing incentives whereas transformation of the local and international SMEs are supported through a single-window incentive program – HAMLE – that is recently announced by the Ministry. TOGG – Türkiye’s first global mobility brand – is being developed on a genuine, born-electric platform, and the development and production of lithium-ion batteries are being carried out in Türkiye. Ford Otosan, on the other hand, announced partnership with South Korean energy giant SK On to build up a gigafactory in Türkiye.
Türkiye’s success in the electric bus and van manufacturing and its own brands should also be noted. Manufacturers such as Karsan, Temsa Bozankaya, and Otokar develop and manufacture electric buses, and make investments in lithium-ion battery modules and packaging. Temsa exports its e-buses to Sweden, Czechia, and Romania, whereas Karsan, a multi-brand vehicle manufacturer, recently launched Europe’s first electric and level-4 autonomous bus that they developed with a Turkish software & technology company Adastec.
The competitive talent pool lies at the heart of the e-mobility transformation and with more than 50 thousand employees, Türkiye increasingly competes on product development, rather than manufacturing only. The R&D Centers established by global OEMs attract a high-skilled talent pool to the industry and complement the R&D, engineering, and manufacturing functions of companies all over the world. Ford Otosan’s R&D Center in Istanbul employs over 1500 people and is one of Ford’s three largest global R&D centers in the world.
Startups are the true champions of the ongoing transformation in the industry. In order to utilize the opportunities in the country, the worldwide known startup accelerator Plug & Play opened its thirty-ninth office in Istanbul in January of last year. Plug and Play Istanbul office aims to bring the Turkish mobility ecosystem together with its global network of 30,000+ startups, 500+ corporations, and hundreds of venture capital firms, universities, and government agencies. Türkiye recently announced a bold target of ‘500 thousand software developers’ and in accordance, opens graduate programs and joins several coding school networks, one of which is Ecole 42 network, a private and non-profit global computer programming school.
In line with the industry’s strong position, the Turkish government prioritizes the e-mobility industry. In the newly prepared strategic roadmap of the Turkish mobility industry (soon to be published), the Turkish government has set electrification and digitalization targets that the local industry will be intensifying its efforts in and the Turkish government encourages local and international investors to this end. With new EV projects launching one after another, Türkiye aims to be an e-mobility hub in its region and it is ready for new investments with its young and skilled talent pool, well-developed supply chain, and logistics infrastructure.
We invite you, distinguished UK automotive companies to take part in the next success stories and yield high returns by investing in the Turkish mobility sector. As the Investment Office, we can assure you of our support at every stage of your investments in Türkiye. To learn more about Türkiye please contact the Investment Office of the Presidency of the Republic of Türkiye.
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