Erdoğan meets Musk amid local car efforts
Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan had a meeting with world-leading Silicon Valley technology and research entrepreneur Elon Musk on Nov. 8, a few days after the launch of a joint venture to produce the country’s first domestically-made car.
Musk, founder of world-leading technology companies SpaceX, Tesla Inc., Nuralink and SolarCity, met with Erdoğan on Nov. 8 at the Presidential Palace in Ankara.
The meeting was attended by Erdoğan’s chief aides, Presidential Spokesperson İbrahim Kalın, Science, Industry and Technology Minister Faruk Özlü and Transportation, Maritime and Communications Minister Ahmet Arslan.
Apart from well-known electric car production company Tesla, Musk is also known for his “moon shoot” projects focusing on renewable energy, new-age lithium batteries, artificial intelligence, space travel and reusable rockets.
The meeting came a few days after Turkey launched a joint venture of five local industrial giants to produce its first domestically-made car on Nov. 2.
Five suppliers - Anadolu Group, BMC, Kıraça Holding, Turkcell, and Zorlu Holding - will jointly manufacture Turkey’s first indigenous car.
New opera house in Istanbul
Earlier on Nov. 8, Erdoğan blasted opponents of the demolition of the Atatürk Cultural Center (AKM) in Istanbul’s Taksim Square.
“When you introduce the new AKM building in Istanbul, the next day they file a complaint about it. What have you done so far? Tell me that first,” he said at an urbanization council meeting.
His comments came after the Union of Chambers of Turkish Engineers and Architects' (TMMOB) Istanbul branch announced that it would file a complaint over the demolition of the AKM, saying the building is a “first-degree monumental structure” that should be under protection.
“No matter which authority you apply to, you should know that, with God’s will, the year 2019 will be the year that giant opera house finishes. You can make a fuss out of it as much as you want,” Erdoğan said.
He had announced on Nov. 6 that a cultural center in Taksim Square will be rebuilt anew as an opera house, scheduled to open in the first quarter of 2019.