Ozer Matli, Bursa Commodity Exchange Chairman at The Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) said that the new greenhouse aid package is a great opportunity for Turkish agriculture.
Matli evaluated the new credit scheme for greenhouse investments and said: "In Turkey, 75% of bananas, 60% of cucumbers, 42% of green peppers, 45% of tomatoes and 32% of aubergines are grown in greenhouses. The aid package for greenhouses is important in order to prevent prices skyrocketing and to find stability."
Matli emphasized that the goal of the aid package is to increase the productivity in greenhouses and said: "Antalya, Mersin and Adana are three important cities in Turkey's greenhouse agriculture. 75% of greenhouse production in Turkey come from these cities. Turkey grows 7,8 million tons of products in greenhouses. However, Bursa provides only very limited part of this production in an area of 7,2 hectares. We need to be more efficient in greenhouse production."
How many greenhouses are there in Turkey?
Matli stated that Turkey has 75 thousand 200 hectares of greenhouses based on the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry's data. He emphasized that only 2% of these greenhouses practice modern greenhouse agriculture. He said: "70% of the modern greenhouse production is exported. In terms of greenhouse product export Turkey has the smallest share in Europe. This data shows that Turkey could improve its greenhouse agriculture."
Matli also emphasized that Turkey has the advantage of relatively lower costs of heating and said:
"Heating greenhouses can be very costly, however the conditions in Turkey are in our favor. The heating costs usually depend on the season, region and the type of products. One can say that heating makes up 25 to 40% of the total cost. The installation cost for 0,1 hectare of greenhouse is around 40 to 60 thousand Euro. Bursa, Balikesir, Kutahya and Afyon have the advantage of geothermal resources. If we can manage to use these resources more efficiently, then we can increase the variety in our products of export. This aid package is a great opportunity for Turkish agriculture."
A closer look at the credit package for greenhouses
Investors now have the opportunity to use credit for up to 75% of the total investment with 8,25% of interest. The maximum time allowed for repayment is up to 7 years.
Medium and long term credits will also be provided for the producers who would like to repair and modernize their current greenhouses. Therefore, the productivity of greenhouses will be increased.