“We import expensive wheat and export pasta for cheap.”
Chairman of Pasta Producers and Industrialists Association (MÜSAD) Nihat Uysallı said that the export figures in the first six months of 2019 showed despite the increase in the amount of pasta exports, they could not achieve the same increase of income.
Uysallı shared the information that Turkey takes the third place in the world as the amount of production and the second place in exports just after Italy, whereas the most important competitor in terms of exports Italy’s average export unit price exceeds two folds.
Uysallı also emphasized that they have the cheapest price among the countries exporting more than 20 tons in 2018 in the pasta exports which Turkey in the second place after Italy and said: “While Italy exports the tonne of pasta by 1,098 dollars, our average export figure per ton is only 455 dollars. Egypt, which is said to be our rival in the African market, exports pasta for a thousand dollars and Iran for 773 dollars. Therefore, they export much less tonnages than we do and they earn much more revenue per ton than us.”
“We shoot ourselves in the foot with unbranded products.”
Stating that the only reason for this situation, which is against the country and the sector in pasta exports, is subcontracted and unbranded product exports, “If we talk about the African market, we make about 70 percent of our exports to this continent and our unit price goes down to 410 dollars in this market. We keep our place in the market with low prices and subcontracting. This undermines the image of Turkish Pasta. Nowadays, Turkish Pasta is known as subcontracting and this is damaging our markets where our price is high, causing prices to fall” Uysallı noted.
Uysallı who pointed that despite the adequate quality of technology and raw material, this situation is completely related to the image of our pasta, concluded his words as follows:
“We should focus on the image of Turkish Pasta instead of quantity in exports. Otherwise, we will continue to lose, not to win, but to export in the future. For this reason, we insist on increasing the export of quality branded products. In our opinion, the solution is very simple. We should not be afraid of competing with the price in export. Because 550-600 dollars / ton average prices do not have competitors. It should change our export vision; quality products, value-added exports should be directed towards the export of branded products. We must structure the incentives and supports accordingly and not support the part below a certain price.”