Interview with Mr Adil Pelister, Chairman of IKMIB

Putting the spotlight on Turkish products.

99 Turkish companies will be participating at Arab Health and will showcase various medical and health products.

By Deepa Narwani, Senior Editor

COVID-19 has negatively impacted almost all sectors of the world right from health to economics, to supply chain and logistics. Moreover, travel restrictions and closures caused economies to slow down and, in some cases, brought it to a complete halt, disrupting the supply-demand balance. However, the chemicals sector in Turkey continued its production processes and exports with great effort during this period.

As an umbrella organisation of the chemicals sector, the Istanbul Chemicals and Chemical Products Exporters Association (IKMIB), conducted various activities to ensure member companies were open to the global market and played a key role in increasing and diversifying export products.

Adil Pelister, Chairman of IKMIB, told Arab Health: “As IKMIB, we provided our hospitals and the Ministry of Health with disinfectant support while we also tried to cover protective shield needs of medical workers.

“During the pandemic, we saw an increase in demand in our sub-sectors such as medical products, pharmaceuticals, disinfectants, cologne, and soap. We had companies that added new product lines and invested in this area to meet the increasing demand in these product groups.”

In 2020, IKMIB’s total exports of disinfectants, cologne, pharmaceuticals, soap, and diagnostic sets increased by 213 per cent and reached US$524 million. Between January to March 2021, the export of the above products increased by 42 per cent compared to last year and reached US$74 million, shared Pelister.

Exhibiting new products

IKMIB organises national participation in prominent global events such as Arab Health, Medica, AEEDC, and IDS. In addition, the company organises trainings and seminars that are directed towards target countries and sectors and committees and workshops where sectoral problems and suggested solutions are discussed.

Pelister said: “This year, the national participation of Türkiye at Arab Health 2021 will be organised by our Association for the second time. A total of 99 Turkish companies will be exhibiting at the trade show. This includes 28 companies, which will participate in the scope of national participation and about 71 companies that are attending as individual exhibitors. Our companies will showcase various medical and health products such as consumable materials, disinfectants, orthopaedic products, OTC products, and hospital equipment. At the same time, start-up companies will have the opportunity to introduce their new products and technologies.”

He believes that trade shows such as Arab Health offer an important opportunity to see and learn the latest developments in the sector and also assist in terms of developing bilateral relationships. The exhibition will offer Turkish companies the chance to introduce their products to prominent names in the business in addition to establishing cooperation.

“With the Türkiye Stand at exhibitions, we present the development of the Turkish health sector both to visitors and to buyers,” highlighted Pelister. “Through website, any buyer anywhere in the world can easily access sellers in Türkiye. We expect our presence to make a significant contribution to increasing our exports and bilateral commerce.”

The pandemic has led to changes in consumer habits, Pelister stressed. Consumers have started using more online channels to make purchases instead of using offline channels. It is foreseen that at least half of the consumers will continue to display this behaviour in the coming years and that this rate would increase. Although B2B is more common in global e-trade, with digitalisation and the development of e-trade, B2C and C2C channels have also started to gain importance.

“In addition, supply and logistics are also very significant. Timely accessibility of trustworthy, high quality and reasonably priced products is also an important subject. Cooperation among countries gained significance regarding health services, products, and their supply in the fight against the pandemic. Thus, I believe companies that underline such dimensions and emphasise digital activities such as e-export, e-commerce will be one step ahead of others,” he added.