AHMET KAHRAMAN, President of Chipboard Manufacturers’ Association / Chairman of the Board of GENTAŞ Group Of Companies

“As I have stated in my previous comments, once again I should say that 2013 has been a stagnant year for our industry. Our European competitors in particular have headed to Turkish market  and our export markets because of the contraction of their markets, as well as the difficulties in the global market. Using their advantages in raw material prices, they managed to decrease their prices. Especially in terms of fiberboard and laminate flooring sales, we went through a hard year in 2013 under the pressure of European countries regarding imports. Capacity was shrinking, because of our struggle with the pressure of imports the domestic market have suffered a significant loss, terms of payment have extended and because of long terms our industry has almost become a financial institution… In fact, we should accept the fact that long-term sales also bring greater risks to market our dealers and traders who market our goods. Because the long term makes it difficult to collect our claims and payments, we are hoping to get some improvement on this issue in 2014.

Due to the growing capacites, our industry can only get better and normal by exporting. We are hopeful for the positive developments in the Iranian market. More moderate and constructive dialogue between Iran, U.S. and Western countries, will also reflect positively on us. Iran, Iraq and Azerbaijan markets gives us hope for 2014. If our conditions of supply of raw materials will be made ​​available to the international competition, our industry will be more hopeful by 2014 in terms of the domestic market and exports.

It is extremely important that the removal of structural and political obstacles in front of the General Directorate of Forestry which is our only supplier. By preserving the balance of production and consumption of our forests, our country, should be able to use it to benefit the national economy. Countries in the world with forest assets, manage to pull up their per capita income levels to a higher level by using the forest and wood sector in the correct format. Countries such as Finland, Sweden, Austria, Canada are the best examples of this.

In the coming years, the General Directorate of Forestry will implement planted cutting and plantation forestry, which will smooth the path for our industry and make things better. It is necessary to re-arrange the obsolete, outdated laws of forest according to the needs of today’s conditions. We expect our politicians to see this situation and act upon that fact.”