More people are choosing bicycles as a mode of transportation in Turkey since the start of the coronavirus outbreak, according to a domestic bicycle producer. 

Bayram Akgul, deputy chairman of Turkey Bicycle Federation, said sales have spiked.

People are afraid to use mass transportation due to fast contagion of the virus.

“The virus has increased the interest in bicycles and people find it a healthy alternative, also due to the closure of gyms,” said Akgul.

Akgul, who is also the CEO of Salcano, said exports have also increased due to a rise in demand for bicycles abroad.

“There is an increase in bicycle exports that makes us happy. Demand from abroad especially from the UK has increased,” he added.

He predicted that this trend will continue even when the pandemic ends.

Akgul said they took all measures to curb the spread of the virus in their factory in Turkey.

“We closed the factory for two weeks when the cases were too high, we have taken all social distancing measures during this period of time,” he added.

On the occasion of World Bicycle Day on June 3, Akgul said bicycles should remain on the world’s agenda.

“I think this year is important for bicycle lovers but we had no chance to plan activities due to the pandemic. However, it will be good to announce activities on social media,” he added.

After originating in China last December, COVID-19, the disease caused by coronavirus, has spread to 188 countries and regions across the world.

The pandemic has killed more than 375,000 people worldwide, with total infections reaching just over 6.27 million, while nearly 2.7 million people have recovered from the disease, according to figures compiled by the US-based Johns Hopkins University.

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