Turkey and the United States: Opportunities await
A message from MÜSİAD USA President Mustafa Tuncer
Since its last International Fair in 2012 and a generation after its founding, MÜSİAD has expanded to the United States. On behalf of my fellow members in MÜSİAD USA, I welcome you to the 2014 MÜSİAD International Fair.
The United States is home to the world’s largest economy, and it is the fourth largest source of Turkey’s imports. Key to the long-term economic success of the United States—my home for nearly a decade—is equal opportunity. To be sure, the United States is far from perfect, but it is called the Land of Opportunity for a reason. Heritage and personal background matter little here. Far more important are initiative, education, and responsibility. Each is a foundational element of success in business.
While the value of bilateral Turkish–U.S. trade approached $19 billion in 2013, nearly a record, the potential for deeper economic ties between the two countries is great. Turkey has long been and remains today a vital ally of the United States. The fellow NATO members lately have been cooperating to defend Turkey’s border with Syria. In 2009, the leadership of both governments agreed to try to expand the economic dimensions of the relationship to a level proportional to the two countries’ political, military, and security cooperation.
It is, of course, the mission of MÜSİAD USA to encourage trade, political, socio-cultural, and economic ties between Turkey and the United States. Governments naturally come and go, but strong ties among peoples can endure. In pursuit of stronger Turkish–U.S. relations, MÜSİAD USA will open an office, its second, in New York City in 2015. We also aim in 2015 to add MÜSİAD representatives in five of America’s larger cities—Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, and Houston. Our first office is located in Washington, D.C., which will remain our headquarters.
The slogan of our 2014 International Fair—“The world is changeable”— is apt. Together we can change business and, thereby, change the world. We can deepen Turkey’s ties around the world and create jobs and better standards of living in the process. We owe it to our children, our communities, and ourselves to try.