At the first ever Automotive Logistics conference held in Istanbul delegates admitted that investment in infrastructure is desperately needed to aid the current growth of the automotive sector.
A survey of delegates from Turkish and foreign carmakers, Tier One suppliers and logistics service suppliers revealed that 75% believe that infrastructure is the biggest challenge facing the Turkish automotive logistics industry. And it was agreed that for production to feasibly grow, massive improvements in Turkish ports would be necessary, both for the import of material and the export of finished vehicles.
However, the conference also covered the implications of the current economic climate, and speakers believed these tough times were an opportunity to develop closer collaboration and better efficiency within the sector. Toyota Motor Europe's general purchasing manager, Emin Ataç, told delegates that he wanted to see innovation as the response to the crisis, particularly in areas of better planning and improving load efficiency.
Attended by representatives from the top four largest carmakers in Turkey, the conference also celebrated the positive developments that have already been made in developing the infrastructure, including a tunnel underneath the Bosphorus, linking the Asian region of Istanbul to the European, which is expected to be operational by 2012. As well as this, Dr. Metin Türkay from Koç University, revealed his 'dream scenario' for infrastructure improvements for Istanbul, which included the completion of dedicated car terminals and improved rail links.