The Project on Maximizing Turkish Packaging Competitiveness
Export Development Project Opening Meeting was held at the Association headquarters on 4 December 2012. The leading packaging companies of the industry showed great interest in the meeting. The Project, in the approximately 19 companies take part, will be completed in 3 years. One of the main goals of the Project is to increase the export share of the participating companies and introduce them to new foreign markets.
An analysis of the performance of the packaging industry for the last 10 years reveals that despite the global financial crises in 2008 and 2009, the industry showed a growth far greater than that of Turkish economy. Turkish Packaging Industry grew by approximately 14 percent in 2011. Although we do not have conclusive data on the performance of the industry in 2012, the data on foreign trade indicates that it grew by 20 percent. This means that the size of our industry has reached 14-15 billion TL.The Packaging Industry export, on the other hand, has doubled in size in the last six years despite the recession in foreign markets due to global crises. It is expected that the industry will grow at a far greater rate than the Turkish economy in 2012. As a result, it is very important to find new market or to increase shares in the existing markets.
Directing the Packaging Industry towards New Markets
We predict that the Turkish economy will pursue a cautious finance and growth strategy in 2013, as it did the previous year. It seems that the driving force behind the growth will be the increase in export, just as it was in 2012. It is estimated that the rate of growth will be smaller in 2012 and 2013 than the previous year. The demand in the foreign markets has been shrinking due to recession, particularly in Europe which is one of our major export markets. These are the fundamental problems which our industry must cope with. Therefore, export is a subject which our Association attaches great importance. The economic recession which is expected in Europe the next year makes diversification of export markets very importance. In order to prevent shrinkage in our classical export markets from affecting the export potential of the packaging industry adversely, our competitive power in the existing markets needs to be boosted and new markets must be found. To this end, we are planning to accelerate our activities for developing international business.
In this context, we developed an Export Promotion Project titled "Packaging Industry International Competitiveness Maximization Project” by using the incentives offered by the Ministry of Economy in order to increase the export performance of our industry at the same rate as the previous years. We believe that these incentives are great opportunities for all companies operating in our industry, particularly the SMEs, for institutionalization and expanding overseas. When all support offered by the Ministry is used within the scope of this Project, our industry will obtain a 2-million dollar incentive.
19 Companies Participated in the Project
Our Project has been approved by the Ministry of Economy officially. Since we first filed our application with the Ministry, the number of participants in the Project went from 13 to 19, an increase which proves that companies operating in our industry are well aware of the importance of export. We initiated Needs Analyses with the participant companies, which is the first stage of the Project. With this Project, we are aiming to contribute to the clustering activities in the industry and to increase their competitiveness in the global markets. We also want to support their institutionalization efforts, reinforce their export infrastructures, expand their presence in the existing markets and allow them to enter new foreign markets.
Ministry of Economy Subsidizes Companies at Certain Ratios within the Project
We are planning to complete the Project in 3 years and 4 stages. Through this Project, companies will be able to enter new markets and conduct market research, both of which are very important activities today, at very low prices. The participants will also be able to attend foreign expos advantageouslywhich is very important in our industry and for which they normally pay very high fees. During the first 3 stages of the Project, the companies will pay only 25 percent of the expenses they incur during the performance of their activities within the scope of the Project. The remaining 75% will be covered by the resources of our Association, which later will be compensated by the Ministry of Economy. At the final stage, 30 percent of the expenses will be paid by the companies, whereas the 70 percent will be compensated by the Ministry.
At the first stage of the Project, the deficiencies of the participant companies with regards to training and export will be determined and the areas which they need training and consultancy will be established. A plan will be developed in this regard and necessary training and consultancy services will be provided to the participant companies. At the next stage, target countries will be determined in order to increase the companies' export capacities, and international marketing travels will be organized, and purchasing committees from abroad will be invited to our country.
At the final stage, the companies which participated in the first 3 stages will receive individual consultancy services, which will be subsidized by the Ministry of Economy (70%).We believe that it is very important to continue providing such incentives and organizing such projects in the future for the development of the institutional capacity of our sector and for increasing its power to compete in global markets.