Turkish textile firms becoming intl brands, sector leader says during Fashion Week
Events like Istanbul Fashion Week are key to introducing Turkey to international markets and building a better international image for the country, according to the Turkish Textile and Apparel Exporters' Union (ITKIB). The group's Chairman Hikmet Tanriverdi said Wednesday that a government strategy to nationalize textile commodities, particularly cotton, is urgently needed in the textile industry. Speaking in the middle of Istanbul Fashion Week, Tanriverdi said the event represents a series of important opportunities for the Turkish textile and ready-wear sectors. "Turkey used to be a contract manufacturer, but over the last decade it's drastically changed its position," he recounted. "Now, in Russia and the Middle East, Turkish ready-wear brands are selling very well and people are aware of them. Our aim is to spread this brand awareness to the whole world, and we can. We have the potential." He said Turkey doesn't stand a chance in price wars with Far Eastern countries such as Bengal, China or Cambodia. As a result, he said, "We have to produce added value to make a difference, and the easiest way to do that is through design." He added that there are many promising new designers that he has high hopes for.