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Turkish brands head for Iran as sanctions end
28
Jan '16
No sooner than the world powers agreed to end to economic sanctions against Iran, leading fashion brands and other businesses in Turkey are making a bee-line to open shop in Iran to grab a market share in the country of 80 million people.

Leading Turkish apparel brand D'S Damat announced it has opened a new store in Tehran just three days after the world was informed about the lifting of the sanctions last week after Iran agreed to end its nuclear weapons programme.

The timing of Damat opening of its Tehran branch and announcements by similar textile firms brought to the fore the Turkish industry's desire to seize possible opportunities in Iran, a report in the Turkish daily Today's Zaman said.

The United Brands Association (BMD) -- the Istanbul-based umbrella organization for over 500 renowned Turkish brands, most of which are retailers – expects to open about 865 stores in Iran over the next three years.

“Twenty-nine of our brands already have 135 stores in Iran. As the embargoes are being lifted, 20 more brands are now able to open 500 stores in total. With the new stores that will be set up by existing Turkish companies in Iran, the total number could rise to 1,000 after three years,” a BMD official said.

On the back of sanctions-driven woes, Turkish exports to Iran fell from $9.9 billion in 2012 to $4.1 billion in 2013, $3.8 billion in 2014 and $3.68 billion in 2015.

“Iran has become an attractive market for Turks after the sanctions, but it is challenging as well,” Bilgin Aygül, the head of the Turkish-Iranian Business Council said.(SH)

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