The Turkish environment minister’s recent call for Istanbul’s giant construction companies to turn an eye to potential in “developing cities” like İzmir has drawn anger from contractors in the Aegean province.
“Only İzmir companies should earn the benefits of İzmir’s business potential,” said the head of the Contractors Federation, Necip Nasır. “We [local companies] will work to keep the value added created in the city within the city by [taking advantage of our local know-how].”
Istanbul’s time to raise money is over so contractors need to go to developing provinces like İzmir, Bursa and Diyarbakır, Turkish Environment Minister Erdoğan Bayraktar said Feb. 18. The minister pointed to İzmir as the first target for construction firms to make investments since the region, comprising İzmir and two developed Aegean provinces, Manisa and Aydın, possess a huge potential for construction projects.
The Turkish government will ease regulations for such companies, the minister also said yesterday.
The businessman said there had been companies from Ankara and Istanbul eyeing investment in İzmir through the formation of consortiums, but added that local players were at a better advantage.
“Of course, there is free trade, but there are many architecture and construction companies capable of handling the potential demand,” İzmir Commercial Chamber representative Akın Kazançoğlu said.
Still, the minister was correct in saying İzmir will be a city greatly affected by urban transformation since 85 percent of the city will be transformed, representing a huge potential for construction firms, Nasır said.