As the Ministry of Trade, we are responsible for overseas construction and engineering consultancy sectors. In this regard, the Department of Overseas Construction and Engineering Consultancy Services is operating under the body of the Ministry of Trade. Our main responsible areas are; following all the overseas projects undertaken by Turkish companies and creating, and implementing policies for strengthening the sectors’ efforts to penetrate into different regions via holding and co-chairing organizations.
The construction sector has a crucial role in the Turkish economy and it is one of the main driving forces in the economic development of Turkey. This sector’s share (together with the share of the real estate sector) in Turkey’s GDP is about 14%, according to official statistics of 2019. Furthermore, this industry has a great contribution to employment figures of the country. It is predicted that this sector, with the other related fields, employs about two million workforce in Turkey.
Turkish construction sector is a significant actor not only in the domestic market, but also in the international markets. Thanks to their international experience, Turkish construction firms are among the major players of the global construction sector. Based on Engineering News Record (ENR) statistics, Turkey has the 2nd position after China in the list of biggest international contracting companies of the world “ENR 2020” with 44 firms. As of the end of 2020, Turkish contracting companies have undertaken nearly 11,000 projects worth 430 billion dollars in 129 different countries throughout five continents.
On the other hand, engineering sector, which is one of the main ingredients of construction works, need to gain maturity and has capacity of guidance in order to ensure progress. Unfortunately, the Turkish engineering consultancy service sector could not expand its desired capacity abroad. In this aspect, Turkish engineering consultancy sector can be defined as a “baby-industry” in terms of development level.
This is because Turkish companies’ competitiveness power is not sufficient against strong foreign engineering consultancy firms in the field of financial structure and size of work completion in overseas markets. As the Ministry of Trade, we are supporting Turkish engineering consultancy companies in order to get increase their competitive power in international markets by using different tools like holding delegation visits to other countries, trade diplomacy, organizing sectoral events etc. The engineering consultancy incentives not only contributes to number of projects undertaken by Turkish engineering companies, but also to increasing of Turkish construction products exports and also to increasing of other service revenues like logistics.
In spite of the fact that Turkish engineering consultancy companies could not complete their development process, this sector has made considerable progress in recent years by penetrating various overseas markets. Turkish engineering consultancy companies have reached notable experience and know-how especially in highway, railway systems, energy and irrigation infrastructure, drinking water and wastewater networks, social facilities and all kinds of residential projects.
Additionally, our engineering companies have made significant progress in financing the projects and investor relations in recent years. In this sense, Turkish engineering consultancy companies have gained the trust of their clients in many countries with their success and they have become preferred companies for new projects. Because of this confidence, the number of projects undertaken by Turkish engineering consultancy companies has reached nearly 2,500 and the total value of these projects reached 2.6 billion dollars as of June 2021.
In conclusion, we definitely believe that our engineering consultancy sector will reach its desired level in the global construction market in the upcoming periods. Their successful businesses in recent years and reputation in the different regions will help them in their development process. As the Ministry, we will continue to provide supports to our companies with the tools that we have.
Murat Nesimoğlu / Head of Overseas Construction and Engineering Consultancy Department, Ministry of Trade