The “New Normal” concept indicates with the word “new” in the beginning that things will not be the same as before. I heard the new normal for the first time from the English press and then started seeing it everywhere. To some, the nature of things was going in this direction, and to others, we were being prepared for the new world through perception management.
This statement always reminds me of the new Turkish lira. The Turkish lira was also distinguished from the old one. The adjective “new” was added in front of it. When we got used to this concept, the “new” became normal, and we started to use the word “Turkish lira” again. I think all of us have learned that the new normal, the main topic of conversation after COVID-19, will also become the norm.
As the world was already changing, COVID-19 only accelerated this change. After that, I think that we also overcame the shock, denial, and acceptance periods. If there are those who have not overcome it yet, I advise them to hurry. Because all countries, investors, and companies have set their strategy according to this new order. Games and players are changing.
Capital is one of the quickest instruments in the world. It always settles when it finds the most suitable place for itself. When the environment changes, it moves quickly. Even these direction changes are quick as a whole, changing the current investments especially in the real sector is not quick enough. Therefore, countries need to be analysed the right way. Let us evaluate the investment to Turkey item by item and find out whether Turkey is worth investing in.
Changing Perceptions About the Country
The industry area of the world, China lost its reputation with COVID-19. Much as the industry continues in the country, major companies have already started to look for alternatives. This changed perceptions and investors lifted their heads to look for new alternatives. China is trying to change the situation; however, it has lost its privilege, unfortunately.
Healthcare System for the Sector and Healthcare Personnel
Investments in the healthcare system and sector substantially increased both in the public and private sectors. Turkey invests in this field both for the health of the people and healthcare tourism. And this attracts the investors of the healthcare sector. It is also affected by the high diagnosis and treatment skills of trained healthcare personnel in the country and the high care services and low costs.
Logistics has always been one of the most important step in international trade. Even with improved transportation possibilities, people felt safer with products coming from closer locations. For it meant lowering the costs and increasing the speed. Turkey also showed that it could rapidly supply what many parts of the world required, especially Europe due to its location.
Turkey offers more advantages than the rest of the world, especially in terms of production and labour costs. On the other hand, labour and production costs have been increasing in China, especially where production is intensively carried out. Noticing this at an early stage, the manufacturing industry has already started investing in Turkey.
Spreading the Investments to Medium Scale
While international investment could only be made by global companies in the past, this situation is changing now. A medium and upper-medium company from Europe can easily establish an infrastructure, which it can supply in Turkey.
Qualified and Quantitative Workforce
We started to hear about Turkish software companies opening to the world. Plus, there are some companies offering services from Turkey to the world. Our country can offer the same quality at much more affordable costs not only in software but in other technical fields as well. We also have a high amount of trained workforce. This advantage can be easily used in different sectors and creates huge energy when accumulated.
One of the most important points that we dwell on the international trade of many companies, which I advise, is the capacity to work with people and companies from different cultures… And Turkey is also going a long way every day in this area. As white-collar employees work in global companies investing in Turkey, this experience is increasing.
Working on joining the European Union for a while, Turkey set many standards up such as working conditions, health, and safety. And this means a system, local control mechanisms, managers, and personnel that understand investors, speak their language, and have equal standards.
Exemplary Investment: BTC Pipeline
Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) pipeline is one of the best examples of on-going investments in Turkey. Established to market Azerbaijan’s oil to the world, the pipeline’s Turkish side is managed by BIL (Botaş International LTD). And 9 countries are partners for the pipeline. When we look at the map, we can see that if the pipeline passes from Armenia instead of Tbilisi, it is more logical in terms of costs, planning, operational easiness, and technique. However, internal security and the standards of the countries, the trade agreements, and relationships among shareholder countries were also considered, and the pipeline is now running through Georgia. Turkey has also successfully managed this situation, making all shareholder countries glad. From this point of view, political and trade diplomacy are two areas that complement each other. Countries that can develop partnerships in trade areas and feel safe do not want their political relations disrupted. It is trade, along with war and migration, that drives change in the world. When used as a right tool, trade also brings peace.
Being abroad for a long time gives us the opportunity to listen to external voices. When seen from the outside, Turkey looks like a country that tries to overcome some difficult moments but attracts attention with its high potential. When we can provide the factors that attract investors such as trust and convenience, it seems quite possible for our country to secure its place. So, my answer to the question that you asked in the beginning is, “Yes, Turkey is worth investing in!”
Dr. Hüseyin Hakan Yıldırım