The inauguration of Ford Otosan’s $670-million Yenikoy plant in the northwestern province of Kocaeli has been marked with a fanfare ceremony.
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Ford Chairman Bill Ford attended the opening. The Turkey-based automaker, in which Ford Motor Company and Koc Holding have equal stakes, celebrated the opening of its third facility in the country, amounting to a total investment of 487 million euros ($670 million). Koç family members, including Koc Holding Honorary Chairman Rahmi Koc, Koc Holding Chairman and Ford Otosan Chairman Ali Koc, accompanied Erdogan and Ford.
Speaking at the ceremony, Erdogan praised Ford Otosan “for making remarkable contributions” to the Turkish economy, expressing his expectation for the company to mark new accomplishments in the future as well.
“Turkey dreams of developing its brand,” he said, asserting the government has been doing what befalls it and expects the private sector to ramp up efforts.
The prime minister also pledged to raise research and development incentives for projects over $1 billion.
In his speech, Ali Koc said Koc family is committed to the government’s 2023 goals, putting emphasis on the cooperation of the state and the private sector for its achievement.
Ford, meanwhile, used his speech to laud his company’s ties with the Koc family, saying they “also are investing in friendship in Turkey.”
The Courier, Ford’s newest light commercial vehicle that was developed by Turkish engineers, has been brought to the stage after speeches from top guests, creating a rare and special photo opportunity.
The group took a short tour around the factory with the Courier, with Ford driving the vehicle, Erdogan in the passenger seat and Koc family members sitting at the back.