POLITICS > Turkish PM visits Silicon Valley

SAN FRANCISCO - Anatolia News Agency

Turkish PM Erdoğan visited Silicon Valley on May 18 for a tour of big technology companies ahead of a key tender for tablets in Turkey’s schools in the framework of the Fatih project. His first stop was Microsoft, where he was welcomed by CEO Ballmer, who is willing to take part in the Fatih project

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Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan visited Silicon Valley and tried Google Glass. AA Photo

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan visited Silicon Valley and tried Google Glass. AA Photo

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan visited Silicon Valley in San Francisco on May 18 for a tour of leading technology companies.

First stop Microsoft, then Apple, Google

His first stop was Microsoft, where he was welcomed by CEO Steve Ballmer. Ballmer, who is in charge of the Turkish Education Ministry’s Fatih project, briefed the prime minister about the ongoing endeavor.

Erdoğan, meanwhile, said a bid related to the Fatih project would be held next week. “We wanted to see the latest developments in the information technology sector before we launched the Fatih bid by visiting the Silicon Valley because we plan to realize a similar project in Istanbul. Our first aim is to produce 10,600,000 tablets as part of the Fatih project, which will be followed by the production of 2 million to 2.5 million tablets.”

Later on, Erdoğan moved to Apple and Google, where he participated in a test drive of the company’s self-driving car along with his daughter Sümeyye Erdoğan and his party’s deputy parliamentary group chair, Ayşenur Bahçekapılı.

Google’s business development director, Seval Öz, the sister of Mehmet Öz, a well-known Turkish doctor in the United States, briefed Erdoğan on the self-driving car and smart eyeglasses.

10.6 million tablet PCs for children

The Turkish Education Ministry has begun a tender process to purchase at least 10.6 million tablet PCs as part of its Fatih project to distribute the devices in schools. The government plans to replace traditional blackboards and textbooks in schools with electronic boards and tablet PCs as a part of the project in order to merge education with innovative information technologies and radically transform the perception of education.

The tender has been rescheduled for May 27. Apple, GM, Samsung and two Turkish companies, Arçelik and Vestel, are so far reported to have applied to participate in the tender.

Chinese company Shangai Fezxun’s offer is expected following the completion of the translation of the tender documents. The bidders have to guarantee that they will establish service stations in all seven regions of Turkey.


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Ali Karp

5/20/2013 10:51:04 PM

To create a "Silicon Valley" in Turkey, requires a mentality.change, democratization and a transparent economic environment. My associates in Turkey tell me that Turkey is still far behind in these. Incentives are awarded to the people who support the government, not to the most qualified. Scientists who hold views contrary to JDP are shunned.


5/20/2013 7:52:36 AM

Doğan - I don't buy the argument that just because you don't like the way a company does business, you can steal from them. Ford motor company arn't excatly poor, do you expect them to give you a car for free? BTW I know a lot about the UK software industry and how it respects copyrights, I worked in it for 30 years.

cezer "çapulcu" skonore

5/19/2013 11:07:31 PM

I think this was how the US uploaded the new Syrian policy to him.

american american

5/19/2013 8:15:03 PM

no dogan, it is our culture. you get cry at europe for 'stealing' yours and then say it is ok to steal ours. shame on you

David Cuthell

5/19/2013 7:24:27 PM

Google glasses! Does the PM see an app for the Presidency? I hope he has a group or 20 somethings from Turkey along as they can bring substance to a photo opportunity.

dogan kemal ileri

5/19/2013 5:36:51 PM

You are permitted to be facetious and jealous Philpot because Turkiye is racing ahead and ever since the demise of the British Empite at the hands of Kemal Ataturk, Britain continues its downward slide.And you don't know your own country because the biggest abusers of coyright is right here in the good old UK. In any case I have no respect for the Microsoft's of the world who are the biggest robbers in corporate history.So good luck worldwide software users from whatever source.It should be free


5/19/2013 3:42:34 PM

I wonder if Microsoft discussed the number of unlicenced versions of windows being used - yep DKİ Turks are very clever!


5/19/2013 3:07:35 PM

"Our first aim is to produce 10,600,000 tablets as part of the Fatih project". I suspect those tablets will mostly be used for playing Angry Birds.

dogan kemal ileri

5/19/2013 12:00:38 PM

We sure need another silicon valley in Turkiye because eventually we must transform our beloved country into a far reaching research and design centre to be able to launch high technology innovations and exports. We already export far more than even Germany but the value of their exports are 5 to 6 timed that of ours. Our mission now is to quickly close that gap and all we need is investment and organisation becase we have more than the adequate human capitol. Quote Ataturk "Turks are veryclever
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