ICI Board's Work Program is Reviewed in the First Assembly Meeting of the Term 2018-2022
The first ordinary assembly meeting of Istanbul Chamber of Industry (ICI) for the term 2018-2022 was held in Odakule on 25 April 2018 with the main agenda of "Reviewing ICI Board's 2018-2022 Work Program". Erdal Bahçıvan, ICI Chairman of the Board of Directors declared the 2018-2022 Work Program of Istanbul Chamber of Industry. "The pioneer role of ICI is to achieve an economical and social transformation centered around an industry with advanced technology and added value. In this sense, we will take the required steps to ensure that the new generation Development Banking fulfills the financing need of the industry first." said Bahçıvan.
ICI April ordinary assembly meeting was opened by ICI Assembly President Zeynep Bodur Okyay. While opening the meeting, Okyay shared her ideas about the agenda:
"I congratulate and wish success to all our members that gained the chance to serve ICI bodies by being elected. In this new term, our main mission as Istanbul Chamber of Industry is to make industry the number one agenda topic of Turkey as always.
It is essential for us to canalize the energy of Turkey to
- gaining personal design and production capabilities in critical industries,
- transforming the traditional branches of industry into businesses with high added value,
- preventing Turkish industry to be a victim of unearned income,
- taking steps to make the industry breath from sustainable financing opportunities to supply of suitable fields,
- establishing a secure system for the quality human resources required by the industry,
- improving the global competitive power by removing all obstacles before the national economy.
And for this, we need strong management skills, ground breaking ideas and inventions, sound arguments to guide the national administration and a single voice in unity and solidarity. In the new term, we expect our assembly to be more active, more engaging and more innovative with all its bodies."
Following the speech of Okyay, ICI Chairman Erdal Bahçıvan took the stage and addressed the assembly members regarding the main agenda item. Bahçıvan expressed their belief that different voices and different opinions in all the meetings and operations carried out under the roof of ICI will continue to enrich them in the new term as in all the previous terms.
Stating that they will be determined to maintain the mentality of ICI that unites reason and fact, sees risks and opportunities together in a holistic perspective of the local and the global in the new term at this fundamental change period of the world, Bahçıvan stated that they are presenting their Work Program in detail regarding the new period based on the principle that the important thing is not where you stand right now, but the direction you are heading to.
Mentioning that other risks and uncertainties defined for long still exist in the global economy, Bahçıvan stated that the factors such as the slow efficiency increase, the aging population, the high global debt stock, the growth coverage issue, the inadequacy of international coordination, the slow structural reforms keep the concerns about future alive. Bahçıvan attracted attention to the fact that they are facing an intense wave of intolerance in the global economy today. "I say it loud and clear: the most basic issue in the world today is intolerance. So much that this constantly increasing wave of intolerance that took various organizations and institutions ranging from IMF to World Bank, central banks of developed countries to research companies under control increase the uncertainty regarding the future." said Bahçıvan.
Stating that the economic boom continued in the first quarter of 2018 following the strong growth of 2017 in Turkey, Bahçıvan reminded that ICI Turkey Manufacturing PMI gave an important signal of slowing down with 51.8 in March after reaching the peak value of the last seven years in the first two months of the year as one of the pioneer indicators of growth.
Emphasizing that the increases in import to be stronger while export reached the highest monthly level of its history in March with the contribution of the recovery in EU economies affect external balances negatively, Bahçıvan said that the current deficit, one of the main issues in Turkey, continued its upward trend.
Naming another important issue as the continuance of double digit inflation figures, Bahçıvan stated that the continuing cost pressure under the influence of the exchange rate changes and the increasing raw material prices is reflected negatively to the consumer prices. Bahçıvan also mentioned that the TL's value loss in April is one of the main factors that will affect inflation negatively in the following months.
Bahçıvan stated that the Turkish economy maintains its moderate growth pace with contribution of the strong support provided by the government besides the high investment and production appetite of its industrialists, but added that they wait for a permanent solution to two important issues named as inflation and current deficit.
Underlining that the return to industry in the world is achieved through the qualitative transformation of the industry, Bahçıvan recorded that the new generation industry mentality in the world is based on a more competitive, more information-intensive production structure with much higher added value. Bahçıvan underlined that it is an inevitable necessity for them to achieve a state-of-the-art structure with high added value in Turkish industry, too.
"Transition to production economy began to be discussed under very challenging conditions. Achieving an economical and social transformation centering around industry in Turkey despite of these conditions is our duty toward future generations. The leading role once again falls to Istanbul Chamber of Industry. Thus, there is no doubt that we will strive to constantly support our industry and industrialists by following the world closely, contacting official bodies and cooperating with our stakeholders in every aspect in order to improve the operating conditions of the industry. I believe wholeheartedly that we will manage to fulfill all these goals, projects and much more all together in cooperation with you, our dear assembly members. We know that our industrialists that shoulder the responsibility and ensure welfare as the driving force of sustainable economic growth deserve everything we do and much more."
Following the speech of Bahçıvan, ICI assembly members took the stage to express their opinions about the agenda.