“In January-March, our sales and exports increased 40 percent and 26 percent, respectively, compared to the same period last year,” said Can Dinçer, head of the White Goods Manufacturers’ Association of Turkey (TÜRKBESD) on April 20.
“Including all domestic sales and exports, total sales of the six major product groups rose by 29 percent to 8.52 million,” he added.
TÜRKBESD’s nine members sell their products under brands including Altus, Arçelik, Beko, Bosch, Candy, Esty, Gaggenau, Grundig, Profilo, Regal, Siemens, Silverline and Vestel.
The Turkish appliance sector’s total production reached 22 million units last year despite the COVID-19 pandemic, which showed its first deadly impact on Turkey in March 2020.
The main export markets of Turkish washing machines, refrigerators, dishwashers and freezers are in Europe.
In a normal year, the sector exports goods value $4.5 billion and generate a nearly $4 billion trade surplus.
“Turkey is Europe’s top white goods manufacturer. The post-pandemic period can bring new opportunities for our country. We can turn our country into a tech base for global white goods production with its strong research and development [infrastructure] and sub-industry and skilled labor force,” said Dinçer.
He added that the Turkish appliance sector’s competitiveness could increase with the implementation of the Paris Agreement on climate crisis mitigation, as main global powerhouses – China, the European Union and the United States – take steps to decarbonize their economies.
On the other hand, Dinçer said retail prices would rise in the coming months as input costs increase rapidly with the headline inflation rate above 16 percent.
The domestic producer price index increased by 31.2 percent on an annual basis and by 4.13 percent month-on-month in March, according to the Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK).
The TÜRKBESD head underlined that many international financial organizations revised growth forecasts for Turkey and the global economy upward in recent weeks.
In the light of leading indicators, the Turkish economy is forecast to grow by 5 percent in the first quarter, the Treasury and Finance Minister Lütfi Elvan said on April 19.
Turkey will see a double-digit growth rate in the second quarter due to the base effect, he added.
The Turkish economy expanded 1.8 percent year-on-year in 2020 amid the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. The country’s gross domestic product (GDP) stood at 5.1 trillion Turkish Liras (some $717.1 billion) last year, according to TÜİK.
Economic activities, industrial boom and export potential have been progressive so far in 2021, Elvan said.
“It is clear that we need to move in a very controlled and moderate way to ensure financial stability,” the minister underlined.
He said that a multipolar supply system should be created instead of a China-based supply center. Turkey has significant advantages at this point with its strategic location, human sources, dynamic population and strong financial structure, the minister added.
Hurriyet Daily News