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Taiwanese, Turkish plastics groups strike deal

By: Steve Toloken

September 26, 2012

TAIPEI, TAIWAN (Sept. 26, 2:50 p.m. ET) — Hoping to give a boost to sales of Taiwanese-made plastics equipment in Turkey and the Middle East, the organizers of Taipei Plas and Turkey’s leading plastics group have signed a cooperation agreement.

The pact, announced Sept. 21 at Taipei Plas, generally is designed to build stronger ties between Taiwan’s large machinery sector and PAGEV, the umbrella group of Turkish plastics associations, but it does not contain any specific measures that directly boost trade.

PAGEV also organizes Turkey’s national fair, Plast Eurasia, which is scheduled for Nov. 29 to Dec. 2 in Istanbul.

Turkey’s plastics sector spends about US$700 million a year on equipment, with more than 90 percent of it imported, as the processing sector grows about 10 percent a year, according to Mehmet Uysal, president of the Istanbul-based Turkish Plastics Manufacturers Research Development and Educational Foundation, also known as PAGEV.

“We realize that our companies tend to buy Taiwanese machines because the Turkish plastics industry needs inexpensive but better-quality machines,” said Uysal, speaking through a translator in an interview after the signing ceremony.

Taiwanese plastics machinery firms export about $31 million worth of equipment a year to Turkey, making the country Taiwan’s ninth-largest export market for its plastics machinery, said Jer­emy Horng, executive director of the exhibition department of the Taiwan External Trade Development Council, or TAITRA, which organizes Taipei Plas. The show was held Sept. 21-25 in Taipei.

The agreement calls for the two groups to promote each other’s fairs and trade advertisements, and to build high-level contacts between the industries in both countries, such as a delegation of 10 Turkish industry executives that attended the show in Taiwan.

Uysal said Turkey is also a frequent base for Asian and European firms that want to enter the Middle East market.

Turkey’s plastics industry had projected 15 percent growth this year, but conflict and political strife in the region has probably cut growth to 10 percent, he said.