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BUILDING MATERIALS IN TURKEY
Construction is one of the key sectors in Turkey, being one of the main drivers of private
and public investments in Turkey. As a result of economic reforms Turkey has established
a large and strong construction industry in a short time. Today, Turkish construction and
engineering companies are able to design, erect, build and operate almost all kinds of civil
and industrial projects such as dams, hydroelectric and thermal power plants, industrial
plants, airports and seaports, large scale petroleum and natural gas pipelines, fertilizer
plants, petrochemical complexes and refineries, motorways, tunnels, bridges, large
housing projects, hotels and all kinds of sophisticated buildings. Turkish contractors have
achieved a volume of work exceeding US$ 19,6 billion in 2011 in 43 foreign countries
spread over four continents.
The concepts of advanced technology, on-time delivery, quick response, high quality, use
of reasonably priced Turkish labor and goods, and equipment and building materials of
international standards have enabled the Turkish construction sector to compete with the
Turkey is a major producer of basic construction materials such as cement, building steel,
timber, bricks, PVC, polyethylene, glass, ceramic tiles and sanitary ware, being especially
strong and competitive in producing construction steel, cement, ceramic and glass
BASIC CONTRUCTION MATERIALS
Iron and Steel
Turkey has a huge iron and steel industry, which produces major inputs for the
construction industry. Turkey’s steel production rose 34.1 million tons in 2011. There are
29 firms, and more than 35.000 people are employed in the sector.
6.2 billion tons of long products exported in 2011, and major markets for long products are
the UAE, Iraq, Singapore, Egypt and Israel.
Turkey produces different types of iron and steel pipes / pipe fittings. Turkey’s iron and
steel pipes / pipe fittings exports reached US$ 1.8 billion in 2011. Major markets for iron
and steel pipes / pipe fittings are the USA, Iraq, The United Kingdom, Czech Republic and
Cement, which is the basic construction material, is produced by 67 cement plants in
Turkey. 19 of them are grinding units and the rest are integrated units. After the
privatization program, capacity expansion and investments in technology in the sector
accelerated. These positive developments has brought the quality of cement up to
In 2010 Turkey’s cement export ranked first in the world. In 2010 the Turkish cement
industry reached an annual production of 62.7 million tons. Turkish cement industry
provides employment for more than 15 thousand employees.
In 2011, export earnings of the sector reached US$ 914 million. In 2011 major markets for
Turkish cement exports were Iraq, Syria, Russia, Brazil and Israel.
Turkey’s total probable marble reserves are 5.1 billion m3 –13.9 million tons. Turkey has a
33% share in the world's marble reserves.
In Turkish natural stone sector, there are about 1.500 mines, 2.000 plants and 9.000
workshops. The sector has also more than 300 thousand employees.
Total natural stone exports were US$ 1.7 billion in 2011. Processed marble ranks first with
US$ 814 million exports in natural stone exports. In 2011 the main countries which Turkey
exported processed marble to were the USA, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom,
Canada, and France.
Ceramics are amongst Turkey’s oldest and best-known products. Turkey’s share in world
ceramic tiles production rose to 3,2%. There were also 30 thousand employments in the
sector. Ceramic tile exports valued US$ 521 million in 2011.
Turkey ranks first in Europe in the production of ceramic sanitaryware, as well.
Sanitaryware production reached 17 million units in 2011. Sanitaryware exports were
about US$ 178 million in 2011. Turkey ranks first in Europe in the exports of sanitaryware
The glass industry is one of the most important and highly developed industries in Turkey.
Today, a group of companies, namely, Sisecam, accounts for approximately 90% of
annual production. There are about 20 large and medium-scale firms dealing with
production in the sector other than Sisecam and a certain number of small ones are also
involved in production. The glass sector has approximately 20 thousand employees.
The Turkish glass industry has a highly intensive production technology and a vast
accumulation of know-how combined with a high level of production capacity, good quality
and wide sales services. Sisecam ranks 6th in Europe and 13th in the world in the glass
The industry has shown an increasing trend in production in recent years and building
glass production capacity was approximately 2,9 million tons in 2010.
Exports of the glass industry have been increasing continuously and totaled US$ 124
million in 2011. The major export countries are Iraq, Azerbaijan, Israel, Turkmenistan and Russia.
Plastic-based Building Products
The domestic production of basic plastic raw materials has naturally resulted in a strong
plastic processing industry in Turkey. At present, there are about 5,000 plastics processing
companies, which are mainly small and medium-scale. In the plastic sector, more than 200
thousand people have been employed.
In 2011, US$ 1.1 billion worth of plastic building materials were exported. The plastic
building materials were exported mainly to Iraq, Russia, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan and Georgia.
The Turkish plastic sector today has attained world standards as far as raw materials,
semi-finished and finished products are concerned. Finished plastic products are expected
to comply with the related Turkish standards (TSE), International standards (ISO) and the
standards set by the EU.
Paints and Coatings
Parallel to the developments in the construction, automotive and marine industries of
Turkey, the paints and coatings industry has also developed and has became one of the
most dynamic sectors of the Turkish Industry.
In 2011 the total value of paints and coatings' exports reached US$ 364 million. The paints
and coatings industry products were exported mainly to Iraq, Iran, Azerbaijan, Romania and Georgia.
The paint sector has reached world quality standards. The number of firms which have
ISO 9000 certification is rapidly increasing in Turkey. The dyes and paints sector has
adapted itself to ecological standards which are particularly developed in Europe.
Building materials exports reached about US$ 19.7 billion in 2011 with 20% growth.
Iron and steel products with an export value of US$ 10 billion were the largest product
group in sector exports. Within this group, iron & steel bars, sections and wires (US$ 6.2
million) rank first, and pipes and pipe fittings (US$ 1.8 million) rank second by value.
Insulated wires with an export value of US$ 1.5 billion were one of the largest product
groups. Plastic-based building products exports also ranked high with a value of US$ 1.2
billion in 2011.
Turkish building materials were exported to about 200 countries in 2011. The main export
markets are Iraq, Germany, the UAE, the United Kingdom, and the USA.
Turkish building materials are exhibited in international and local fairs organized in Turkey.
In 2012, 10 main building materials related fairs, which are listed below, will be organized
TRADE FAIRS IN TURKEY
Eurasia Floor - 12th Floor Covering Materials Sector Fair
Unicera 24th International Ceramic, Bathroom, Kitchen Fair
Kitchen World 2012 8th International Kitchen, Bathroom Furniture, And Built-In
Appliances Fair-March, Istanbul
6. Yapidecoor Ankara 2012
Isk - Sodex 2012
35. International Yapi / Turkey Build 2012 İstanbul –
Yapitech 2012 - 11st International Build Product And Technology Expo –
25th International Yapi / Turkeybuild 2012 Ankara Fair
18th International Yapi / Turkeybuild 2012 İzmir Fair
20. International Yapex - Building Materials, Construction Technology And Building
Renovation - October, Antalya.
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