Talks are ongoing with carmakers from Europe and Asia, including China, to lure more investments into Turkiye’s automotive sector, Industry and Technology Minister Fatih Kacır has said.
“We are hoping that at least one of them will announce an investment decision by the end of the year,” he said.
Those companies may produce electric and hybrid vehicles in Turkiye,and the western province of Manisa appears to be the likely candidate for possible plant investment, Kacır said.
“Volkswagen made a mistake. It missed an opportunity in Manisa. I hope they reconsider their decision. The site for a plant is ready in Manisa for those that want to make an investment,” he added.
The German carmaker had abandoned its plan to build a factory in Manisa with a more than $1 billion investment.
“We are holding talks with almost all carmakers from Europe and the Far East, including China. We, particularly, focus on luring investments for new generation, electric and hybrid vehicle production.Talks are ongoing with companies, which currently do not have investments in Turkiye,” he told a group of reporters.
Kacır also said one of the global carmakers, which already operates in Turkiye, may announce new investments. He, however, did not name the company or provide other details.
The minister recalled that the government provided a substantial incentive for Ford’s electric vehicle production initiative.
“Also, Toyota will begin manufacturing a new hybrid model vehicle in Turkiye. There is strong demand from companies for electric vehicle investments in the country,” he said, noting that the government will continue to provide support for EV production.
Turkiye is one of the largest automotive manufacturers in Europe. Last year, 1.35 million vehicles were produced in the country, pointing to a 6 percent increase compared with 2021.
Passenger car production grew 3.6 percent in 2022 from the previous year to nearly 811,000, according to data from the Automotive Manufacturers’ Association (OSD).
In the first five months of 2023, automotive production leaped 20 percent to 616,000, with passenger car output rising more than 30 percent year-on-year to 386,000.
The Automotive Distributors and Mobility Association (ODMD) reported earlier this month that 556,000 passenger cars and light commercial vehicles were sold in January-June, up 56 percent from the same period last year. Passenger car sales grew 55 percent to 430,400.