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ITM: Branded For Growth

Turkish textile machinery show builds on prior success, moves to larger venue.

TW Special Report

I TM Textile Machinery Exhibition — a biennial event organized by Teknik Fuarcilik ve Yayincilik Ltd., a Turkey-based textile publication and exhibition service — will return to Istanbul, Turkey, for its 2006 edition, taking place June 27-July 2 at the CNR Expo International Fair and Convention Center. The show is the second produced under the ITM banner in Istanbul and the third in a series of textile machinery exhibitions produced by Teknik. The first, Bur-Tex 2002, was staged in Bursa, some 100 kilometers (km) south of Istanbul across the Sea of Marmara, or 240 km by land.

Located at the crossroads between Europe and Asia, Turkey — with Istanbul as its commercial capital — is a vibrant center of textile and apparel activity within a region that spans eastern Europe and the Middle East. The country has a long history of textile production, including traditional carpets and kilims that are still handwoven in Anatolian villages even today; regal silk fabrics produced in Bursa during the time of the Ottoman Empire, mostly from silk threads and yarns brought from farther east along the Silk Road to that centuries-old textile trading and manufacturing center; and other fine woolens, cottons and velvets woven in Bursa and other textile centers during that era.

The Turkish Textile Industry

Turkey’s modern textile and apparel industry began to develop in earnest in the 1960s and ‘70s. Today, the industry comprises about 40,000 companies employing approximately one-third of the country’s industrial workforce and supplying some 25 to 30 percent of its exports, according to Turkish Time, a publication of the Turkish Exporters Assembly. In addition, US Department of Agriculture (USDA) statistics show Turkey ranks eighth worldwide in cotton production, with 4.2 million 480-pound bales produced in the 2004/05 marketing season; and domestic cotton consumption for the same season totaled 7.1 million bales, putting the country in fourth place in that category, after China, India and Pakistan.

According to a report published in the November 2004 issue of Turkish Time and written by Musa Demir, a foreign trade expert with Turkey’s Foreign Trade Undersecretariat, the country’s share of global textile exports — most of which are destined for the European Union, which Turkey aspires to join — increased by 450 percent from the early 1980s up to the time of the report, making it the 10th-largest textile exporter. Demir noted that Turkey’s textile imports increased even more — by 1,270 percent — putting it in ninth place in that category. Even so, the country remains generally a net exporter of textiles, as evidenced by trade statistics compiled by the Geneva-based International Trade Centre (ITC). These data show 2004 exports of apparel and apparel accessories, floor coverings and made-up articles were vastly higher than imports, while imports dominated in trade of raw materials including fiber, yarn and most fabrics — with exceptions found for man-made woven fabrics; knit and crocheted fabrics; and lace, trims, embroidery and such.

Turkey’s textile and apparel manufacturers have made significant investments in machinery, with imports totaling US$1.4 billion in 2002 and US$1.7 billion in 2003, according to Demir. There are a number of manufacturers’ representatives in Turkey, representing many of the major European machinery makers as well as some US and Asian manufacturers. The country also counts a significant number of domestic machinery manufacturers, which, in addition to selling to Turkish textile manufacturers, also export their products — although in lower volumes than the imported machinery, according to ITC statistics.

The country prides itself on the high quality and competitive prices of its textile products, according to Kürsad Tüzmen, state minister responsible for foreign trade and customs, writing in the November 2004 issue of Turkish Time. In addition, he wrote, the industry also “ offers a modern and civilized environment of production, structured by an understanding of social and environmental responsibility, legal compatibility to international law, sustainability in quality and fast delivery.”

The Turkish textile industry, while strong, has gone through fluctuations in recent years, and today faces challenges brought on by the removal of quotas in January 2005 in line with World Trade Organization (WTO) policies for member countries and the resulting rapidly rising volume of inexpensive textile products — particularly apparel products — coming out of China into the global marketplace. The challenges are exemplified in textile trade statistics for Turkish textile and apparel shipments into the United States, as provided by the US Department of Commerce International Trade Administration’s Office of Textiles and Apparel (OTEXA). According to OTEXA data comparing year-end shipments between January 2005 and January 2006, the value of total shipments was down by 11.8 percent to $1.6 billion. Within that total, apparel shipments dropped by 22.5 percent to $913 million, while nonapparel shipments rose to $655.7 million, for a 9-percent gain.

Turkey has worked actively to influence the WTO to consider textile-related issues separately from other trade issues in light of the particularly drastic impacts of the quota removal on the global industry. Its proposal that the WTO establish a separate textile sectoral negotiation within its Non-Agricultural Market Access talks has received support from US textile trade organizations as well as from several other countries that have been, or expect to be, adversely impacted by the removal of textile and apparel quotas. At the same time, the proposal has been sharply criticized by China and Pakistan, among other countries that are benefiting from quota removals, as running counter to the WTO’s objectives to liberalize trade, according to a report published in Bridges, the Geneva-based International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development’s weekly trade news digest.

Turkey also recently reduced its value-added tax on textiles as a protective measure to bolster its domestic industry, a move that has drawn concern from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which agreed to provide a $10 billion loan to Turkey to help it deflect a financial crisis in 2001. The IMF fears such action might threaten Turkey’s ability to restore its financial health.

Even so, the country’s overall economic health has been improving since 2001. According to the latest report from the Turkish Statistical Institute, Turkish gross national product (GNP) rose by 7.6 percent for 2005, including a hefty 10.2-percent gain for the fourth quarter over year-earlier GNP.


  cnraerial
CNR Expo offers 150,000 square meters of exhibition space in 10 halls.

ITM - Regional Showcase

ITM 2004 drew 770 exhibiting companies including 650 foreign businesses. According to Teknik, the high volume of participation from major textile machinery and accessories manufacturers attracted approximately 60,000 visitors, primarily from the Middle East and eastern Europe, but also from several western European countries, the United States, Russia and the Far East.

Building on the success of the 2004 show and bolstered by aggressive publicity efforts, ITM 2006 is moving from the 2004 venue, Tüyap Fair Convention and Congress Center, into the CNR Expo — Turkey’s largest exhibition center, with 10 halls comprising 150,000 square meters of exhibition area. As a result, says Necip Güney, sales and marketing director, Teknik, “serious foreign visitor attendance” is anticipated at ITM 2006.

The full list of product categories includes: cotton and man-made fiber preparation machinery and accessories; yarn twisting machinery; yarn preparation machinery, spare parts and accessories; nonwovens machinery; weaving preparation machinery and equipment; weaving machinery, spare parts and accessories; narrow loom and quilting machinery; circular and flat knitting machinery, accessories and equipment; dyeing, printing and finishing machinery and equipment; laboratory equipment and quality control systems; computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing/computer-integrated manufacturing applications and automation systems; and textile chemicals.

The larger venue enables organizers to devote up to five halls to dyeing, printing and finishing; two to spinning; two to weaving; and one primarily to circular and flat knitting machinery and equipment. Already, exhibit space in the weaving, yarn, and dyeing and finishing halls is sold out, and organizers say leading technology developers from Belgium, England, France, Germany, Italy and Switzerland will be present to show their latest innovations.

  boat
The Bosphorous Bridge spans the Bosphorous Strait and connects Istanbul's European and Asian sectors.

ITM organizers cite Turkey’s easy access and central position within the region as advantages that draw both exhibitors and visitors to ITM, and also note the show is less expensive to participate in than major textile machinery exhibitions staged in Europe and the Far East. In promoting ITM as a comprehensive, branded international exhibition taking place every two to three years within their own region, they believe the show will be a more effective venue for exhibitors to bring their products and innovations to their buyers than smaller, more frequent and localized shows. As Technical Operations Director Ümit Vural notes, “[At] least two years is necessary for formation of a certain synergy.”

ITM’s biennial format is supported by Turkey’s machinery manufacturers’ representatives as well. Mehmet Saraçoglu, general manager, Sarteks Tekstil, points out: “An exhibition is held if there’s something new …. [I]n order to persuade the foreign manufacturers to come here and join the exhibitions, they should have a new product to show, and we should be promoting them in Turkey.” He decries sector-specific shows that are staged more frequently as ”catalog exhibitions” that are little more than opportunities for the participants to get together.

 
mosque
Istanbul's Sultanahmet Mosque, or Blue Mosque - built from 1609 to 1616 for Sultan Ahmet 1 - is the only mosque in Turkey with six minarets.

ITM organizers cite Turkey’s easy access and central position within the region as advantages that draw both exhibitors and visitors to ITM, and also note the show is less expensive to participate in than major textile machinery exhibitions staged in Europe and the Far East. In promoting ITM as a comprehensive, branded international exhibition taking place every two to three years within their own region, they believe the show will be a more effective venue for exhibitors to bring their products and innovations to their buyers than smaller, more frequent and localized shows. As Technical Operations Director Ümit Vural notes, “[At] least two years is necessary for formation of a certain synergy.”

ITM’s biennial format is supported by Turkey’s machinery manufacturers’ representatives as well. Mehmet Saraçoglu, general manager, Sarteks Tekstil, points out: “An exhibition is held if there’s something new …. [I]n order to persuade the foreign manufacturers to come here and join the exhibitions, they should have a new product to show, and we should be promoting them in Turkey.” He decries sector-specific shows that are staged more frequently as ”catalog exhibitions” that are little more than opportunities for the participants to get together.

The Turkish agencies play an important role in providing sales and service of foreign-made machinery to Turkish textile manufacturers. As Gürcan Bakkalci — founder of Barok Tekstil Ltd., which represents Italy-based SMIT S.p.A. — points out, the local representatives know the local factory owners and how they look at their businesses. He says the traditional investor in Turkey “ is fearless in machine purchasing and renovation, enterprising and ambitious,” and adds, “The ones who know these entrepreneurs can understand that sales of textile machines will continue in the same trend in the future.” Bakkalci supports ITM as a biennial show “in a country where there are investments that continue with regular, systematic updates.”

According to Turgut Karabulut, general manager, Erler Makine ve Mümessillik, Turkey is one of the top sales markets for the companies Erler represents. Among those companies are Trützschler GmbH & Co. KG, Schlafhorst, Saurer Allma, Zinser and Volkmann — all based in Germany; and a number of others.

“Turkey is the right place and they open offices in order to provide better service. Each company has different inspectors who live in Turkey,” Karabulut said, noting Erler also operates a large spare parts store and maintenance workshop to service customers of the companies it represents.

While foreign manufacturers will be well-represented at ITM 2006, both under the auspices of their local agencies and under their own banners, domestic manufacturers will certainly not be absent from the show. As mentioned above, they do significant business not only in Turkey, but also with customers in the surrounding region and beyond. For example, Alkan Makine has been manufacturing machinery for the dyeing and finishing sector since 1974. CEO Cüneyt Alkan says the company’s products comprise 15 to 20 percent of the Turkish market, and it also exports machinery to 16 other countries, with an eye as well on the US and European markets.

“ITM … will serve as a bridge that connects the Middle East and Turkic Republics with the European textile market, and it will shape the textile investments in that region,” Alkan said. “ Also, ITM exhibitions are very important in order to increase the trust to domestic machine producers in the Turkish textile industry.”


  kulesi
Kiz Kulesi, built on an island at the entrance of the Bosphorous Strait, has a history dating back to 341 B.C.


Italian Textile Machinery At ITM 2006

Italian manufacturers of textile machinery have responded positively to ITM 2006. More than 100 Italian companies will exhibit at this year’s show, a testament to the importance of the Turkish market to Italian machinery companies.

The prominent role played by Turkey’s textile and clothing sector internationally has made the country one of the world’s leading markets for textile machinery. In 2005, Italian companies exported 232 million euros worth of textile machinery to the Turkish market, which confirmed Turkey as a leading world market for the Italian textile machinery industry.

The most requested Italian machines by Turkey are weaving machines — 27 percent of 2005 exports, knitting machines — 26 percent, and finishing machines — 25 percent.

The 300 Italian companies, with 23,000 employees, which in 2005 produced machinery for a value of 2,600 million euros, pay the highest attention to the requests of the textile industry to propose new solutions of innovation, productivity and safety with the utmost satisfaction of their clients.

On its parts, the Milan-based Italian Association of Textile Machinery Manufacturers (ACIMIT), in collaboration with the Italian Trade Commission, has had several opportunities to meet the Turkish textile machinery sector, as it has set up over the years an intensive program for increasing contacts between operators from the two countries.

— By Mauro Badanelli, economist, ACIMIT Press and Economics Office



French Textile Machinery At ITM 2006

The Paris-based French Textile Machinery Manufacturers Association (UCTMF) will support its member companies at ITM 2006.

“What is very interesting in Turkey is that you find there the whole textile industry from spinning, weaving and knitting to finishing and the customers, the apparel and home textile industry, as well as the technical textiles producers including nonwovens usages,” said Evelyne Cholet, secretary general, UCTMF.

In 2005, approximately US$120 million worth of textile machinery was shipped from France to Turkey. “Turkey is a very important market for our associates,” Cholet said. “In 2005, more than 12 percent of our exports, which represent a world total of $1 billion, were shipped to Turkey; it is second to China only.
“We are also going to ITM 2006 to meet our customers and prospects from neighboring countries as Iran, Syria, Russia, Egypt, Bulgaria, Georgia, Uzbekistan and many more,” Cholet added, noting French companies strive to offer state-of-the-art machinery and have established long-term relationships with their customers in Turkey.

French companies and companies with subsidiaries in France that will participate in ITM 2006 include Alliance Machines Textiles, Bekaert Carding Solutions, Laroche, Rieter Filament Yarn Technologies, N. Schlumberger, Stäubli and Superba.



For more information about ITM 2006, contact Teknik Fuarcilik Ltd., Fabrikalar Cd. No:1 Besyol, Florya, Istanbul, Turkey; (90) 212-592-59-92; fax (90) 212-599-38-82; info@teknikfuarcilik.com; www.itm2006.com.

May/June 2006

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