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Singapore firms to explore business opportunities in Turkey, Georgia

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INTERNATIONAL Enterprise (IE) Singapore and Singapore Business Federation (SBF) are leading a 20-member strong business delegation to Turkey to explore new business opportunities. - PHOTO: SPH

INTERNATIONAL Enterprise (IE) Singapore and Singapore Business Federation (SBF) are leading a 20-member strong business delegation to Turkey to explore new business opportunities.

The mission, which is held in conjunction with Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's official visit to Turkey, will look at key sectors that Singapore players can participate in. These include the consumer electronics, medtech and infrastructure sectors.

Valued at US$12.4 billion in 2013, Turkey's consumer electronics is seen as a sector with great potential. Total spending in the sector is forecasted to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.7 per cent from 2014 to 2018. Singapore companies which have made some headway in the sector include Bluetree, Trek 2000 and XMI.

Another growth area is Turkey's medical device market, which is projected to grow at a CAGR of 8.5 per cent from 2013 to 2018. This compares to global CAGR of 6.6 per cent from 2014-2019. "This is driven by rising healthcare needs, including the expansion of healthcare facilities such as large city hospital complexes as well as rising health expenditure," IE said of Turkey which relies heavily on imports for medical devices.

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With mega projects in airport, shipping canal and real estate in the pipeline, infrastructure is another key growth sector for Singapore companies to participate in. "Such projects would be a good track record for Singapore companies seeking to expand their footprints not only within Turkey, but also Europe and Asia," IE said.

As of end-2012, Singapore's direct investments in Turkey stood at S$289 million. Bilateral trade between Singapore and Turkey amounted to S$1.4 billion in 2013.

To further boost business collaboration with Turkey, IE Singapore has appointed Ýbrahim Süha Güçsav, chief executive officer of Akfen Holding, as Honorary Business Representative (HBR) for Turkey with effect from October 2014. Mr Süha Güçsav will act as an advisor to help bridge the gap between companies of both countries.

Akfen is a listed conglomerate in Turkey, with a 2013 turnover of 111.45 million Turkish lira (S$62.3 million). Its main areas of activity include port operations, airports/terminals, airport construction, water and wastewater utilities, energy and real estate. Since 2007, Akfen has been in a joint venture with PSA to operate Mersin Port in Turkey.

Prior to Turkey, the Singapore business delegation visited Tbilisi, Georgia from Oct 8-12. This was the first business mission to Georgia, jointly organised by IE Singapore and SBF.

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