Country Report

TURKEY: recent growth more than doubles capacity

Turkey currently produces over 550 thousand MT/Yr of towel and tissue (T&T) paper. That makes Turkey sixth in European T&T production. This is a notable change from just a decade ago. In the last 10 years Turkey has increased production by approximately 400,000 MT/Yr as a consequence of doubling the number of its machines. Turkey’s economy is evolving with many reforms in progress. The country became an associate member of the European Community in 1964 and began accession talks with the European Union in 2005. The economy of Turkey is primarily industrial and service-based with only 25% of employment in the agricultural sector. With strategic geographic advantages derived from linking the Black Sea with the Aegean and Mediterranean (Map 1), Turkey has become a key area for oil and natural gas pipelines to Europe.

T&T production in Turkey is concentrated near coastal areas, primarily around the Sea of Marmara and Aegean Seas (Map 2). The country ranks sixth in European T&T producing countries (Figure 1) and fifth in number of operating machines (Figure 2). T&T machines in Europe vary from narrow two-metre machines to 5.5 metres with one machine over seven metres. Turkey has machines that cover the typical trim range for Europe, with the average being in the 3.5 metre range (Figure 3). Average machine production in Turkey is greater than the European average of 53,000 MT/Yr and tech age is slightly lower than the average at 15-16 years (Figure 4). Fibre mix in Turkey is heavily weighted to Kraft pulp compared with many countries in Europe with significantly higher recycled furnishes (Figure 5). Nevertheless, cost of production for mills in Turkey is comparable to other areas in Europe (Figure 6). T&T machine production rates in Turkey tend to be modest with more than half of the machines making 30,000 MT/Yr or less. However, recent-activity is shifting toward the higher-rate range of 60-70,000 MT/Yr (Figure 7). Machine trims account for the less robust rates.

Slightly over 50% of Turkish machines are less than four metres in trim width (Figure 8). Machine speeds are somewhat more advanced compared to other European countries with 75% + of the machines over 1,200mpm (Figure 9). On an international scale, Turkish machines tend to have above average capacity and below average technical ages. Also noteworthy, Turkish growth in T&T production is apparent in Figure 10 with half of all machines being less than 10 years old and many of these new machines falling in the 60-70,000 MT/Yr capacity range.

Data Tables behind Figures 1 – 10 can be obtained from Fisher International. E-mail requests to [email protected].

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