The general director of the Confederation of Turkish Tradesmen and Craftsmen, Bendevi Palandoken, also condemned the attack: "We are deeply sorry and are in great pain for our losses. God bless our brave martyrs. And to their families I'd like to say, please accept my condolences."


Charming promotions create extravagancy in Turkey

The Confederation of Turkish Tradesmen and Craftsmen (TESK) Chairman Bendevi Palandöken said charming promotions and deceptive advertisements in shopping malls incite people to engage in compulsive and brash consumption behaviors that result in extravagancy.
Palandöken said in a written statement that consumption habits change as lifestyles change, and the younger generations in particular are abandoning the culture of shopping at neighborhood shopkeepers. The retail industry in Turkey, worth $250 billion, half of which is constituted by food spending, is rapidly growing, Palandöken said, adding: "Attractive promotions and deceptive product advertisements in shopping malls and hypermarkets particularly urge younger generations to consume rapidly and engage in wholesale shopping, which increases food waste."
Palandöken also underlined that people who shop once a month are charmed by advertisements that incite them to take advantage of cheap promotional products and urge them to buy things they do not need. People no longer have time and patience to buy fruit and vegetables from greengrocers, meat from butchers and bread from bakeries, he said. This behavior, according to Palandöken's statement, causes people to throw away many food items even without opening them at the end of month.
Highlighting that the significance of tradesmen is gradually diminishing for those who move from neighborhoods to housing estates and residences, Palandöken said shopping malls convince people that they buy groceries for less money when they shop wholesale on a monthly basis. Warning consumers against deceptive slogans, he called on people to buy food products from district bazaars or neighborhood shopkeepers instead.(7th September)


Tradesmen calls for calm: attacks threaten 1,000-year-old brotherhood

  Bendevi Palandöken, the head of the Turkish Tradesmen and Artisans' Confederation (TESK), appealed for calm, saying the constant news of dead police and soldiers is creating public tension.
“Our grief is twofold. Those who aim to disrupt our unity although we have been living in these lands for 1,000 years will not reach their goals,” he said, adding that the public must stay calm.
“They want to set us against each other. The real aim is to try and kill our soldiers and police to increase the violence in large cities and provoke an environment of chaos. Our people will not fall for this trick,” Palandöken said.(7th September 2015)

Business world reacts to alleged plan of gov’t crackdown

Turkish Tradesmen's and Artisans' Confederation (TESK) Chairman Bendevi Palandöken told reporters on the weekend that his union disapproved of the political pressure that has already threatened what was once a healthy economy. “We find it important that the political situation is calmed down as soon as possible so that everyone can focus on their own work. … We believe a crackdown on investors will surely affect markets negatively,” Palandöken asserted.(30th August 2015)



Turkish Tradesmen's and Artisans' Confederation (TESK) Chairman Bendevi Palandöken said that it wasn’t possible for the country’s business community to operate under such pressures. “Under such pressure there can be no trade and no journalism,” he said, “Businessmen, tradesmen, industrialists need to work in a free environment for the markets not to be negatively.”(30 August 2015)


Union president: Remove restrictions on credit cards

Abolishing the restrictions on credit card installments and raising the extreme limit on consumer credit to 60 months are necessary to reinvigorate the economy, the Confederation of Turkish Tradesmen and Craftsmen (TESK) President Bendevi Palandöken said. Palandöken said in his written announcement that consumers are staying away from spending due to the political uncertainty and this is causing temporary economic stagnation. "The practice that the Turkish Banking Association has carried out about abolishing the restrictions on credit card installments is very positive. To reinvigorate the economy, the restrictions on credit card installments should be abolished and the extreme limit on consumer credit should be increased to 60 months," emphasized Palandöken.
Noting that tradesmen are facing trouble since people are spending less, Palandöken stressed that they supported the practice of abolishing the restrictions on credit card installments. Additionally, in case the extreme limit on consumer credit is increased to 60 months, consumers will be encouraged to spend. "This will put an end to the economic stagnation and relieve both consumers and tradesmen," Palandöken said. Palandöken said that consumption came to a halt because of the temporary uncertainty and that consumers prefer buying foreign currency instead of spending their money. Foreign exchange deposit accounts in banks have increased by $30 billion, thereby reaching $185 billion since February, Palandöken said adding that, "If some of this money is channeled into consumption, the foreign currency's fever will reduce and the economy will be revived.(25th August 2015)



Planned red meat imports, high prices ruffle feathers With the price of red meat seeing a 30 percent jump over the past 12 months, the government has taken several measures to reduce the prices, triggering debate among sector representatives. Meat prices in Turkey have been steadily increasing in recent years due to supply problems and merchants' speculative sales moves, according to sector representatives. In a bid to maintain food price stability, as prices rise and push inflation up, the government has announced a number of measures, with the state-run Meat and Milk Board (ESK) now being forced to import high amounts of meat and to sell them at discounted prices. Such moves have been met with different reactions among sector players. The ESK launched a tender to buy 3,200 tons of frozen meat on Aug. 5, announcing that the purchases would continue until the Feast of Sacrifice holiday on Sept. 24. The ESK plans to import a total of 19,000 tons of meat from the EU in the coming days. The Butchers Federation has stated that the price cuts in meat the ESK and the planned meat imports from the EU will harm butchers' income. 'Unfair competition environment created' "The state creates an unfair competition environment by itself. As butchers, we cannot endure the highly discounted meat price of the state-run ESK," said head of the federation, Fazh Yalcindag, quoted by daily Hiirriyet on Aug. 12. Bendevi Palandoken, the head of the Confederation of Turkish Craftsmen and Tradesmen, said last week that the real reason behind the price hike was speculation before the Feast of Sacrifice, also known as Eid al-Adha. "To prevent the hike in meat prices, small cattle raisers should be supported," he said, citing past experiences that said the rise in demand did not result in price hikes. Several food associations support the rise in imports, saying meat consumption in Turkey is only onethird of the European average.



The head of the Confederation of Turkish Tradesmen and Craftsmen says the spending for Father's Day shopping has been higher than other special days. Local stores pin high hopes on Father's Day. Confederation of Turkish Tradesmen and Craftsmen President Bendevi Palanddken has said consumer spending for this year's Father's Day on June 21 is expected to be more than 1.5 billion Turkish Liras and that this amount will accelerate the Turkish economy. Palandoken said in a written statement on June 19 that tradesmen and shopkeepers were ready for what is expected to be a hectic Father's Day shopping season for many sectors, from textiles to consumer electronics, stressing there were affordable gifts available for everyone and people with different incomes should spend their money accordingly. The spending for Father's Day shopping has been far higher than those for other special days, Palandoken said. The spending amount is expected to excess 1.5 billion liras, he said, after 1.5 billion liras in spending last year and 1 billion liras in 2013. Textile, consumer electronics "People will help boost primarily the textile and consumer electronics sectors with their Father's Day spending. Our tradesmen and shopkeepers have gotten prepared for this day, for which everyone is expected to spend on the basis of affordability," he said. Palandoken also said this weekend's sales would be higher than those of usual days. One-fourth of Father's Day spending was in the consumer electronics and telecom sectors, he said, adding the most shopping was done in the Marmara and Central Anatolia regions of the country.(20.06.2015)



Turkish business world embraces results, calls for strong coalition As the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) failed to garner the requisite number of votes for single-party rule in Sunday's election, business leaders have underscored the urgency of a robust coalition government, proclaiming respect for the preferences of the voters. The results of the June 7 election yielded an inclusive parliamentary arithmetic in which the 13-year-long stand-alone administration of the AK Party came to an end and where one more party obtained enough votes to pass the election threshold. While prominent economy experts from almost all parties in Turkey managed to get elected, Ali Babacan, an anchor of investor confidence under the AK Party, was left out of Parliament. Turkish Tradesmen's and Artisans' Confederation President Bendevi Palandoken, in the meantime, said business spheres would prefer the timely establishment of a government that ignores previous harsh discourse and prioritizes peace and tranquility. (09.06.2015)



Writing on the shopwindow of a jewelry store says it has run out of small gold coins, a traditional gift at Turkish wedding ceremonies. Wedding spending to hit $5.8 bin in summer. Some 600,000 couples are expected to get married this wedding season and spend around 15 billion Turkish Liras ($5.8 billion), Confederation of Turkish Craftsmen and Tradesmen head Bendevi Palandöken has said. "The rise in the number of weddings enables many tradespeople from over 20 sectors to increase their business volume, from home appliance sellers to jewelries, from hairdressers to textile sellers, from construction firms to real estate agents," Palandoken said. "We expect weddings to inject around 15 billion liras into the economy in 2015." Some 600,000 couples are expected to get married across Turkey this year. Wedding economy to hit 15 bin liras in 2015. Some 600,000 couples are expected to get married this wedding season and spend around 15 billion Turkish Liras ($5.8 billion), said Bendevi Palandoken, head of the Confederation of Turkish Craftsmen and Tradesmen in a statement today. A majority of weddings are held in the summer months, as the agricultural yields are harvested and Turkish people living abroad are able to visit the country on holidays, added the statement. Many Turkish companies have pinned their hopes on the approaching "wedding season," betting that the spending of couples and their families will stimulate business. "The rise in the number of weddings enables many tradespeople from over 20 sectors to increase their business volume, from home appliance sellers to jewelries, from hairdressers to textile sellers, from construction firms to real estate agents," Palandoken said. Some 599,704 couples got married in 2014 and over 600,000 couples are expected to get married this year. "We expect the weddings to inject around 15 billion liras into the economy in 2015," Palandoken noted. He added Turkish tradesmen would hold promotional campaigns and special discounts for the prospective married couples.(20.05.2015)



Protest by shopkeepers at Grand Bazaar of shopkeepers at Istanbul's iconic Grand Bazaar yesterday held a protest against their eviction after the General Directorate of Foundations reportedly leased 80 shops to a single businessman after a tender. Grand Bazaar shopkeepers protest evictions The Grand Bazaar is a popular location among locals and tourists and generates major income for over 3,000 businesses. ISTANBUL'S historic Grand Bamm zaar was bustling on Tuesday with a protest by shopkeepers who refused to be evicted from the shops they rent from a state-run agency overseeing the marketplace. The General Directorate of Foundations had issued eviction notices to 80 businesses in Grand Bazaars Sandal Bedesteni, a section of the 15th-century structure where shops selling carpets, souvenirs, handbags, jewellery and clothes are located. The eviction was due to the leasing of the area through tender, reportedly to a single tenant for a longterm lease. After officials hung eviction notices on the shops that called businesses to vacate the place by April 22, angered shopkeepers locked themselves in the shops on Tuesday. They resisted the police who attempted to evict them for hours before the riot police stormed the bazaar's section, whose large doors were sealed by protesters late Tuesday. Twenty shopkeepers resisting the police were detained and released early yesterday. Released detainees returned to their shops yesterday afternoon and started evicting their shops in the presence of police. A group of shopkeepers staged a protest outside the bazaar against eviction as the goods were being removed from the shops. Shopkeepers, many running businesses for over two decades, told reporters that the General Directorate of Foundations decided to lease their shops for a higher rent "to cover the costs of the restoration" of the Grand Bazaar, and they failed to reach an agreement with authorities to keep their shops. They claimed they never failed to pay their rent and called for a solution to the issue. Bendevi Palandoken, president of the Confederation of Turkish Tradesmen and Craftsmen, said in a statement that the eviction of Grand Bazaar shops would mean the "extinction of a culture." Rumors are already circulating that the adjacent shops would be converted into a hotel. Palandoken said it was unacceptable to have shopkeepers evicted before the peak season begins, referring to the summer season when a large number of tourists flock to the site for shopping. Palandoken called on the authorities to reach a deal with tradesmen in Sandal Bedesteni where 500 people work. The Grand Bazaar, one of the oldest of its kind in the world, covers 45,000 square meters. It has 3,125 shops and 25,000 employees. The bazaar is visited by 91 million tourists every year and remains one of the most popular tourist destinations in Istanbul's historic peninsula, which is home to several world-famous landmarks including the Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia, located several hundred meters away from the bazaar. Despite its cultural and economic importance, the bazaar has been neglected in terms of renovation and restoration due to multiple ownership, despite the fact that it has fallen into a state of disrepair over the years. The Municipality of Fatih district where it is located, readied a renovation project for the bazaar and set aside TL 25 million ($9.2 million) for the restoration and renovation. (23.04.2015)



THE FUEL oil maximum pricing mm application that the Energy Market Regulatory Authority (BDDK) introduced on Feb. 19 has benefited consumers who escaped paying around TL 420 million ($156 million) for fuel oil since then. Thus, assertions that this was practiced with election concerns in mind would appear to be wrong. With the EPDKs decision, the margin that is added to the exrefinery price of gasoline and diesel oil is determined as TL 0.34 and TL 0.37 per liter, respectively. Even though this decision failed to satisfy the fuel oil sector, a TL 0.09-0.10 discount in the pump price of fuel oil was welcomed by the public. EPDK Chairman Mustafa Yilmaz said that the practice ended on April 20, refuting assertions that the decision was made due to election concerns. Yilmaz said that criticism that fuel oil prices are kept low ahead of elections was being made "on purpose." He added that if they really had concerns about the elections, they "would have taken such a decision at a later time, as there are almost two months to go before the elections" "We do not approach the matter in a populist fashion," Yilmaz said, saying that they steered the market by launching a maximum pricing application because of deviation from competition and price discrimination. "As of today, we have switched to a free market. Again, distribution companies will set prices. I believe we have achieved the objective in maximum pricing," he added. As soon as the application time of the EPDKs decision ended, gasoline and diesel oil prices increased. Stating that they continue to monitor prices in the market, Yilmaz said that this supervision is necessary. "We will closely monitor (distribution companies) if they do not abide by the legislation," he added. Bendevi Palandoken, chairman of the Confederation of Turkish Tradesmen and Craftsmen, said that the maximum pricing application in fuel oil should be re-introduced because the practice controls fuel oil prices and consumers save millions of lira this way. Palandoken also said that the number of fuel oil dealers should be limited, since fuel oil prices have seen three hikes in a week.(23.04.2015)



Tax hikes on cigarettes may foster smuggling The recent rise in fixed tax from cigarettes and alcohol over the inflation rate will encourage smuggling, the head of the Confederation of Turkish Craftsmen and Tradesmen Bendevi Palandoken has said. Cigarette counterfeiting and smuggling have been rising in recent times and the latest tax raises should be suspended to maintain the fight against such illegal activity, he warned in a written statement Jan. 2 "The latest tax increase on cigarettes will cause a rise in prices, resulting in a dramatic increase in smuggling. This will pave the way for one in four cigarettes being smuggled in the near future, raising from one in five cigarettes as it stands. Every price increase ends with a rise in smuggling, unfortunately, causing harm both to peoples' lives and the state's budget, as well as small tradesmen's income. ... In order to prevent these, the raise needs to be suspended" he said. The tax hikes on tobacco will foster smuggling, says TESK head Palandoken. in tobacco was kept at 64.25 percent, with the minimum fixed tax ratio increasing by 5 percent to 0.19 Turkish Liras following the new year. The fixed tax rate for beer, which was 0.74 liras per liter, has been increased by 15 percent to 0.85 liras. The fixed tax rate for wine has been increased by 16 percent to 4.59 liras and by 16 percent for sparkling wine to 31.02 liras. The total number of smuggled cigarettes jumped to 16.3 percent of total sales in 2010 and 19.6 percent in 2011. Although the share of smuggled cigarettes decreased to 15.3 percent of total sales in 2012, it rose to 19.6 percent of total sales in 2013. The share of smuggled cigarettes then jumped to 20.3 percent by the end of the last quarter of 2014. More than 22 billion units of smuggled cigarettes are claimed to be in the market, half of which come from Bulgaria. It is calculated that smuggled cigarettes have cost the Turkish economy 18 billion liras over the last five years.(03.01.2015)




Confederation of Turkish  Tradesmen and Craftsmen
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