Empowering SMEs for Networking and Inter-Regional Cooperation Project
The project ensured that SMEs are supported in areas such as raising competitiveness on the international market, diversification of products and services, improving innovations and labour capacity. Establishment and preservation of cooperation between public-private sector, nongovernmental organisations, and university-industry have been highly supported.
In line with the project objectives, Clustering Info Centres were established in selected five pilot cities:
- Çorum Chamber of Commerce and Industry - Çorum
- Exporters’ Association of South Eastern Anatolia - Gaziantep
- Kahramanmaraş Chamber of Commerce and Industry - Kahramanmaraş
- Samsun Chamber of Commerce and Industry - Samsun
- Trabzon Chamber of Commerce and Industry - Trabzon
The Cluster Info Centres, which are a part of global networks that have practical information and experience on clustering, created a model that can be operated in both pilot provinces and throughout the country in the future.
At these centres, SMEs are equipped with a strategic support in training, access to information, and improving efficiency and competitiveness. 700 SMEs were contacted, and a 20% increase was achieved in the effectiveness and similar performances of SMEs taking part in clusters, which are a project target.
An up-to-date Information Management System was activated which facilitates SMEs, clusters and supporting institutions to access and share information on various sectors and fields.
20 sector-based clusters joined the National Comparison System. Development and changes of clusters are supervised in this way.
A cooperation strategy for sectors that have priority in exportation and strategic roadmaps for business clusters were developed.
Businesses operating in the same sector but located in different regions of Turkey to unite forces, cooperate and build strategies and networks sit in the heart of clustering activities. Sectoral clustering is expected to play an important role in reaching economic development targets.