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H.E. Etienne Schneider, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Economy visited Turkey (11-13 February 2015)

Published Monday February 23 2015

H.E. Etienne Schneider, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Economy, visited Istanbul from 11 to 13 February 2015 and met with the Turkish business community to build up stronger ties between both countries. In parallel to the Minister’s visit, an economic mission was organised between 10 and 13 February by the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce with the help of the Ministry of Economy, Luxinnovation and the Embassy of Luxembourg in Turkey. Within the framework of this economic mission, representatives from Luxembourg companies, active in information and technology technologies (ICT), automotive components and space technologies participated to different workshops.

On 12 February, H.E. Etienne Schneider inaugurated a seminar co-organised by the Embassy of Luxembourg in Turkey, the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce, with valuable contributions of local partners representing the start-up ecosystem in Turkey. This seminar intended to promote Luxembourg as an access point to European markets, in particular in information and communication technologies (ICT). During the seminar, the Deputy Prime Minister underlined the efforts made by the Grand-Duchy to facilitate the establishment of companies offering technologic and innovative solutions. “The Luxembourg government is offering a favourable environment for development to start-ups, in particular at the establishment phase. The entrepreneurs can benefit from several opportunities like personalised assistance or provision of an incubator.” Mr. Schneider also presented one of the government’s latest initiatives “Digital Luxembourg”. This global digital strategy aims at strengthening and consolidating the position of the country in the ICT sector and to make Luxembourg a “high tech” centre of excellence to attract more foreign investors.

In addition to several business leaders he met at a lunch organized by DEIK, H.E. Etienne Schneider discussed prospective cooperation possibilities with the top managements of some renowned Turkish companies. Among them, Turkish Airlines, which connects both countries with daily passenger flights since end of March 2014 (80.000 passengers/year) and Mars Logistics, partner of CFL Multimodal operating now a direct line between Luxembourg and Turkey for merchandise transportation by railway apart from the combined link rail/road already in place via Bettembourg to Turkey.

Other events organized during the trade mission included a workshop organised in Ankara on 11 February on space technologies at Turksat (Turkish Satellite Operator) Headquarters. After the presentations of Luxembourg and Turkish space strategies by Luxinnovation and Türksat, representatives from Luxembourg and Turkish space companies and organisations briefly presented their activities and products. Turkey and the Grand-Duchy are already neighbours on orbit with their respective frequencies on 31.0 and 31.5 and would like to intensify their relations. B2Bs have been useful for Turkish and Luxembourg companies to identify mutual cooperation opportunities. A visit to TAI (Turkish Aerospace Industries) Headquarters concluded the programme of space technologies sector representatives on 12 February.

Luxembourg companies representing the automotive components segment have had a separate programme. They visited, on 12 February, two Turkish bus/coach and semi-trailer producers interested in intensifying their cooperation with the Grand-Duchy. Their programme ended with a workshop at TAYSAD (Association of Automotive Parts and Components Manufacturers) on 13 February. Innovation and research and development in the automotive components sector were the main topics discussed.

The mission ended with the signature, in presence of the Minister, of a joint venture agreement between CTI Systems from Luxembourg and Vinçsan from Turkey in order to establish cooperation in the fields of intralogistics and surface treatment.