FİKRİ IŞIK SUPPORTS THE INDUSTRY
Plastics industry steps into action for toys "Made in Turkey"
Being indispensable for children's development and education, toys play an important role when it comes to sustainability of the cultural values; however domestic toys producers are pushed to compete with imported toys. Value of the toys produced in Turkey in the last 5 years was $1.9 billion, while around 25% of this production ($493 million) was exported. In the same period, value of the toys imported was $3.1 billion. Plastic toys constituted around 58% of the toys import, and 29% of the toys export in the last 5 years. This import growth impelled PAGEV and the toys industry. They combined their forces to stimulate the toys industry and increase domestic production. Supporting these efforts in the industry, the Minister of Science, Industry and Technology Fikri Işık convened with the industry representatives at the "Toys Workshop" arranged by PAGEV.
Click on the image for videos from the workshop.
In order to protect the domestic toys industry, top 25 toys companies came together at the "Toys Workshop", arranged in Istanbul in the presence of the Minister of Science, Industry and Technology Fikri Işık, hosted by PAGEV (the Turkish Plastics Foundation). Having been included in the next three-year "Turkish Industrial Strategy and Action Plan", the toys industry came together at the Toys Workshop to express their problems and demands, and discuss solutions for leading up the situation and development of the industry
China dominates imports of toys in Turkey...
Toys market in Turkey totals around ₺800 million to ₺1 billion. However imports –and current deficit– in the domestic toys industry rapidly increase, and the amount of production declines day-by-day. Value of the toys produced in Turkey in the last 5 years was $1.9 billion, while around 25% of this production ($493 million) was exported. In the same period, value of the toys imported was $3.1 billion. 92% of the foreign toys were imported from China.
Plastics industry is planning to increase their share in the toys
Value of the plastic toys production was $564 million in the last 5 years. 25% of the toys ($141 million) was exported; share of plastic products in the exported toys was 29%. In the same period, value of the imported toys was $1.8 billion; share of the plastic products in the imported toys was 58%.
Plastic toys manufactured in Turkey in the previous year were exported to 136 countries. Top 10 export destinations for the Turkish toys industry are Turkmenistan, Iraq, France, Russia, Spain, Greece, Iran, Morocco and Romania. Toys do not hold the lion's share in the Turkish plastics industry, but plastics have a major role in the toys industry. Moreover, high added-value products have a great potential in production and export of the plastics industry.
Revival of the toys industry is waiting for incentives and supports
Industry representatives who participated in the workshop emphasized that investments on domestic products should be encouraged and incentives on investments for innovation, upsizing and modernization should be increased. A narrow control mechanism was demanded in order to ensure healthiness and reliability of the imported products. The industry representatives also requested additional tax regulations against imported products and demanded support for domestic designs to mitigate domestic production, and highlighted that domestic product awareness of the public should be heightened. They emphasized that in addition to original domestic toys, licensed high added-value products could be produced in Turkey if producers were encouraged enough.
Making a presentation on the toys industry in Turkey, the Chairman of Executive Board of PAGEV Yavuz Eroğlu said: "As the plastics industry, we will continue to provide support for strengthening and reviving the Turkish toys industry. We shared our suggestions for domestic toys production with the Ministry by the end of the last year, and the Ministry promised to increase investments. The Minister of Science, Industry and Technology Fikri Işık included the toys industry in the next three-year "Turkish Industrial Strategy and Action Plan", which was the most important development for us. We would like to take this opportunity to to thank Mr. Işık and the Ministry for their supports. Establishing a 'Organized Industrial Zone for Toys' is also included in the plan. This is a giant step for the development and branding of the domestic toys industry. Constituting a huge part of the toys industry, the plastics industry closely monitors this process, and is ready to serve its part.
Eroğlu said, continuing his words: “But the organized industrial zones may not solely be enough for reviving domestic toys production. Imports, particularly from China, have reached an enormous dimension. It would not be fair to say that all of the toys made in China are dangerous to health, but parents should be careful with these toys. First of all, we need firm customs controls and protective measures for the imported products to eliminate their domination in the toys industry. We also believe that rate of VAT applicable for the domestic products should be reduced to 8 percent in order to promote domestic toys in the domestic market. In order to effectiveness of the Turkish toys in international markets, manufacturers should be provided support for creative designs."
Yavuz Ertoğlu: "Turkey should have a National Toys Day"
Speaking of the information he obtained during the President of the Republic Erdoğan's China visit, Yavuz Eroğlu said: "First day of the June is the National Toys Day in China; toy sales peak at this day. We believe that it would be useful for the development of the domestic toys industry if we had such a lovely day in Turkey. Therefore, we request April 23 or another special day be the 'National Toys Day' in Turkey. We can encourage people to buy domestic toys for their children, and convey our fundamental ethical values and cultural richness at the same time. We can spread our values to the world with national characters that we created. This could improve our domestic market, and help us strengthen our competitiveness creating alternatives to the export markets."
Fikri Işık said: "Toys industry is a very important actor for the manufacturing industry, and Turkish economy and culture as well. Toys have a very crucial for children's physical and mental development. We may have a clear view of the potential of the industry in Turkey taking 19 million children aged 0-14 into account. Number of the children is increasing every passing year. In Turkey, people used to spend $20-25 per child on toys; but this amount increased significantly in the last 5 years. We suppose this amount will be doubled in the next 5 years. Toys industry is a rapidly growing and developing market in Turkey; its share in the Turkish economy is increasing day-by-day. But our producers have to produce while challenging with the imported products."
Fikri Işık stated that the volume of the world trade was $135 billion in 2014, and added: "According to 2013 data, trade volume of the toys and games production is ₺426 billion in Turkey. Operating profitability of the toys industry is 9.2 percent, which is about 50% over the manufacturing industry average. Moreover, this industry provides employment for around three thousand people. But we do not find this profitability and employment enough: we want to improve this industry with new investment strategies. As you know, we included the toys industry in the three-year 'Turkish Industrial Strategy and Action Plan', and are going to establish the 'Organized Industrial Zone for Toys' as part of this plan in the next year. We also have incentive plans for product designs, which have an important place in the industry. We want to support design offices as we do for R&D centers. We will stand by the companies that do not have design offices by deducting the supports they receive from the taxes", concluding his words.
Click to watch PAGEV - Ministry of Science, Industry and Technology "Toys Industry Workshop"