In Hatay, an EU-supported project aims to help manufacturers of traditional hand-made furniture become more efficient and competitive, in particular through a 4,295 m2 common-use facility equipped with hi-tech machinery that will help to decrease manufacturing lead times and production costs. Minister of Science, Industry and Technology H.E. Faruk Özlü and Deputy Head of the EU Delegation to Turkey, Mr. Gabriel Munuera Vinals, will open the Common Use Facility Building in Hatay today, 3 March 2018.
The facility will help handmade furniture manufacturers in Hatay to receive manufacturing support services, especially for processing raw materials into basic furniture parts. This will enable the handmade furniture producers to outsource production of semi-processed furniture products, and apply their craftsmanship on precisely semi-processed furniture parts. The impact of establishing such a common-use facility is expected to be observed at least at three levels:
- the manufacturing processes will be shortened, allowing the handmade furniture manufacturers to work with shorter manufacturing lead times;
- certain parts of the furniture products will be manufactured by hi-tech machinery, increasing the quality standards; and
- the production costs will decrease.
The project is financed under the EU's Regional Competitiveness Operational Programme, managed by the Ministry of Science, Industry and Technology. The project's total budget is €7.3 million, with the EU contributing €6 million. The project's direct beneficiary is the Antakya Chamber of Industry and Commerce. In addition to the infrastructure investment, a technical assistance team helped the beneficiary and the furniture manufacturers establish a management structure and business plan for the facility. It also provided trainings and design services.
The Head of the EU Delegation to Turkey, Ambassador Christian Berger, said on the occasion of the common-use-facility opening: "There are many common goals and priorities that the EU and Turkey can work towards together in the framework of EU programs; the Regional Competitiveness Operational Programme funded under IPA is one of them, but COSME and Enterprise Europe Network (EEN) are other EU programs that Turkey joined. These initiatives confirm Turkey's interest in collaboration with the EU and will help the country increase the competitiveness of its enterprises, in particular SMEs. This in turn will help the country grow further and become more prosperous: a goal that the EU pursues for more than 500 million people across the continent."
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