Aiming to cut its dependence on imports, Turkey on Wednesday broke ground on the largest glue and adhesive factory in the Middle East and Eastern Europe region.

Speaking at the groundbreaking ceremony of the Beta Kimya plant in Kocaeli, northwestern Turkey, Industry and Technology Minister Mustafa Varank said:

“The facility, representing an investment worth 315 million Turkish liras [$46 million], will create new employment opportunities for 500 people.”

Varank underlined that the plant will pave the way for Turkey to domestically produce polyurethane reactive hotmelt adhesives and various derivatives for the first time, goods always imported up to now.

As an important input in various industries such as packaging, automotive, furniture, construction, defense, and aviation will be procured domestically, the investment will help Turkey to cut $120 million worth of imports in the mid-term, Varank stressed.

The investment will evaluate possible exports after meeting domestic demand, he added.

Attending the ceremony via teleconference, Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan underlined the importance of the investment for the country as dovetailing with Turkey’s high-tech, value-added manufacturing and export strategy.

The factory will boost the country’s export capacity while creating added value for products which are imported, she said.

“Hopefully, we will reach the level of high-income countries with high technology and value-added product production and exports,” she said.

Chemicals will continue to be one of Turkey’s leading sectors, she noted, adding that after the decline in March-May due to the pandemic, in June it reached an export target of $1.8 billion, up 6.2% compared to the previous year and 24% compared to May.

*Written by Aysu Bicer and Tuba Sahin from Ankara

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