Turkey should ‘dance with new tune’ in industry: Top business organization chair
“When the tune changes, the dance should change as well. The tune has changed in the industry. And we need to dance in harmony with the new tune. Thus, we will stay on the floor or we will slide off,” TÜSİAD chair Erol Bilecik told daily Hürriyet in an interview on Feb. 26.
“We believe that the digital transformation of the industry will be a key factor in increasing the global competitiveness of Turkey,” he added.
“Currently, the average education attainment level of the labor force is eight years. Turkey is like a secondary school graduate whereas its competitors have gone to university. Changing the situation is a must,” he also said, emphasizing on the need to provide value-added skills and opportunities for innovational careers and development for the future generations.
Growth rate forecast at 4.5 percent
TÜSİAD estimates the annual gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate for 2017 at 6.9 percent, according to Bilecik.
“I think it is better to be open to new surprises in economic forecasts, especially when you are in a region like ours. Our growth rate expectation is 4.5 percent for this year,” he said, calling it a “balanced growth.”
They expect the year-end inflation rate to drop just below the two-digit level, 9.8 percent, although this estimate is much higher than the target the Turkish Central Bank has specified.
Saying that its main objective is achieving and maintaining price stability, the Central Bank said in a statement on Dec. 5 “the inflation target for the 2018-2020 period is set at 5 percent as per the agreement reached with the government.”
The TÜSİAD chair also expressed the organization’s support for Turkey’s ongoing military operation in Syria’s Afrin district launched on Jan. 20, defining it as a “preventive operation against terrorism.”
When reminded that TÜSİAD’s calls for the end of the state of emergency were criticized by the government, he asked: “If the state of emergency was not declared, could we get more foreign investments and could the growth rate of Turkey be higher?”