Overseas logistics centers poised to boost Turkish exports
ANKARA- Anadolu Agency
The innovation of Turkish overseas logistics centers will ensure the rapid flow of exports and products’ penetration of international supply chains at low cost, thus serving sustainable export growth, according to an expert.
"Logistics centers will also help us boost our capabilities in e-commerce abroad," Turgut Erkeskin, chairman of the Foreign Economic Relations Board's (DEİK) Logistics Business Council, told Anadolu Agency.
Erkeskin said the centers will enhance Turkey's export performance in strategic regions such as Africa, the Americas, Europe, Russia, and the Far East.
Citing a decree by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan this October on government support for logistics centers, he noted that some expenses of these centers would be supported by the country's Trade Ministry for five years.
"We target the countries where our exports have deep growth potential," Erkeskin said, stressing that they would first open in countries with relatively less logistics infrastructure.
The first continent that stands out is Africa, he said, adding: "Our first focus will be countries such as Ghana and Nigeria, where there are major bottlenecks in logistics infrastructure despite their great market potential."
"Since they have a habit and taste for Turkish goods, we can achieve permanent export improvement here."
Cost advantage in Europe, US, China
Countries with developed logistics systems, like the U.S., U.K., Germany and China, are also included in the initiative, Erkeskin said, adding that Turkey could gain an advantage via incentives provided by those countries and the efforts on special commodity groups.
"If we obtain a cost advantage in those countries and boost our competitiveness, we'll continue to work to ensure that our small- and medium-sized entrepreneurs benefit from the incentive," he said.
Logistics centers will create timing advantages for deadlines, especially for e-commerce, besides the cost advantages, Erkeskin said.
"They will also enhance customer satisfaction thanks to fast delivery."
Amid the supply chain disruptions caused by the novel coronavirus outbreak, logistics centers will help Turkish exporters eliminate such hurdles, he maintained.
"Even if countries implement lockdown measures, we'll have the ability to use our presence and export potential in those countries," Erkeskin stressed.
"This is a very important function."
Belt and Road Initiative
For countries with less-developed logistics infrastructure along China's Belt and Road initiative, the incentive will offer Turkish exporters various opportunities, he added.
The Belt and Road Initiative is an ambitious development program to connect Asia with Africa and Europe via land and maritime networks along six corridors with the aim of improving regional integration, boosting trade and stimulating economic growth.
Underlining that these countries’ investment environment and legal infrastructure is also very important, Erkeskin said: "We also want to receive invitations from those countries, such as investment incentives."
Erkeskin said tangible steps towards opening the logistics centers will be taken in the third quarter of 2021, providing areas for storage, loading and unloading, handling, shipment, and cargo unification and division services.