In order to increase its competitiveness in foreign trade and ensure better integration of all transport networks into commercial operations, Turkey will establish logistic centers stretching along 294 kilometers of junction line, including organized industrial zones, ports and free trade zones.
At the launching ceremony of Turkey’s Logistics Master Plan in Ankara on Wednesday, Industry and Technology Minister Mustafa Varank stressed that his ministry and the budget and strategy directorate of the Transport and Infrastructure Ministry carried out a joint survey to examine the possibilities of transport modes and their integration into the railways. “As part of the study, we have set the goal to establish logistic centers in the strategic organized industrial zones and free trade zones to further strengthen our industrial power,” Varank remarked.
The new Logistics Master Plan, created with the coordination of the Trade Ministry, Industry and Technology Ministry and Transport and Infrastructure Ministry, primarily aims to increase the efficiency of logistics services, identification of alternative transport routes and establishment of new logistics hubs.
In his address, the industry and technology minister drew attention to the fact that the economic center of gravity is shifting toward the east from the west. He further highlighted that the Chinese-led Belt and Road Initiative is transforming the logistics infrastructure of the countries through which the massive initiative passes. Varank argued that the project therefore opens the gate to new markets, introducing new modes of doing business, and brings new dynamics into the economy. Turkey, he added, must play a leading role in the emerging markets by unleashing its existing superior qualities.
In reference to the outstanding development of Turkey’s transport infrastructure, the minister maintained that the enhanced network has fortified the country’s strategic location, boosting economic growth and employment by way of reviving trade and investments.
The minister also pointed out that the steps taken in transport and logistics directly impact Turkey’s competitiveness. “It is of great significance to diversify the transport modes in industrial zones and logistic areas,” he said, continuing: “We have prioritized meeting the logistic needs of our industrial zones as part of the 2023 Industry and Technology Strategy. We have collected the handling data in the industrial zones and the related markets and examined their logistic needs.” As part of the study conducted by the Industry and Technology Ministry, the distance between the organized industrial zones and the conventional railways has also been mapped out.
LOCATION BIG ADVANTAGE FOR LOGISTICS
For her part, Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan stated that a large portion of Turkey’s foreign trade is carried out by sea while the country depends on road transport for regional deliveries. “It is important for our export targets to make this outlook more balanced with the breakthroughs in logistics, to increase the share of railway transportation in our foreign trade and to reduce domestic transportation costs,” she added.