Turkish Airlines

Turkish Airlines takes fight for Vancouver route to news media

After having the Vancouver Turkish Canadian Society collect over 1500 signatures to support its bid for the Vancouver-Istanbul direct route Turkish Airlines and the Society have taken the fight to mainstream news media. The Vancouver Sun published a story titled “Unfriendly skies: Battle for YVR-Istanbul flight shows Ottawa’s role in limiting airline connections”. The paper has correctly pointed out that routing agreements are made between governments, while Air Canada’s business interests as the national carrier play a pivotal role. It has also pointed out to the fight between Emirates Airlines and Air Canada that had turned into an unpleasant international incident. Turkish Airlines has ignored the guidelines for an effective lobby gratuitously provided by the Turkish Canadian Chamber of Commerce through a government channel. It has, instead relied on a petition by the small Turkish-Canadian community in Vancouver and the threat to fly to Seattle if the right to Vancouver route is not granted. Several European airlines have tried this tactic without any success, since Seattle-Portland represent 2-percent of the U.S. market. Vancouver, on the other hand, is comparable to Los Angeles as Canada’s Pacific port and home to large ethnic groups. After taking big losses busing Vancouver passengers to Seattle for nearly 30 years Scandinavian Airlines abandoned Seattle and hopes of flying out of Vancouver since it could not offer any reciprocal benefit to Canadian carriers. With Turkish tourism taking a dive after the Russian plane and terrorist incidents it’s doubtful if Air Canada would find it attractive to fly to another Turkish city. However, there may be other benefits Turkish Airlines could offer the carrier in return for the Vancouver route.

Neither the Turkish community in Vancouver nor the smaller Turkish community in Seattle are big enough to sustain a direct route service to Vancouver. However, the real plum for Turkish Airlines would be destinations beyond Istanbul if the airline were granted Vancouver rights. The Vancouver area Iranian community alone is estimated around 150,000, a boon to Turkish Airlines since Ottawa cancelled privileges to Iran Air when it broke off diplomatic relations. What complicates the issue is Air Canada’s 50-50 partnership with Lufthansa German Airlines. The German airline makes most of its Vancouver revenues not from Germany but destinations beyond Germany.

The airline is popular among Canada’s Turkish and Middle Eastern ethnic communities since it features “Cheap Fares and Gourmet Food”, a ” Delicious Kebab House In The Sky”, a role model for airlines such as Air Canada still serving bland hospital food.

Chinese Canadian Chamber of Commerce Opens In Vancouver

The Chinese Canadian Chamber of Commerce was opened in May by a group of Canadian businessmen that pioneered Canada’s trade with Taiwan in the 1980’s. The Chamber offers services to Canadian companies that want to buy from or sell to China and to Chinese companies that are seeking export markets or investment opportunities in Canada. It also offers student placement services to Chinese students who want to pursue academic or ESL studies in Canada.

  Express Entry System Discriminatory and Counterproductive To Canada’s Economic Interests
Express Entry

Express Entry: Where Are The Brains?

The Express Entry Immigration System implemented by the previous federal government on January 1, 2015 replacing Canada’s decades-old objective and unbiased points system of granting immigration status to qualified applicants violates directly or indirectly several provisions of the Canadian Human Rights Act. The System, which incorporated skilled worker, skilled trades and the Canadian experience class openly discriminates against applicants older than 30 years of age. It also discriminates against citizens of non-English-speaking countries with an arbitrary points and selection process where most overseas applicants have little chance of succeeding if at all. Since the system went into effect thousands of well-educated and highly experienced professionals with dreams of settling in Canada have been waiting in vain as collateral in a useless database called the Job Bank. The system is an adulteration of Canada’s decades-long fair immigration process. It is counterproductive to Canada’s economic interests since it excludes experience and maturity as unwanted traits and aims to flood the employment market with green and inexperienced school graduates that make up most of the unemployed. At the World Economic Forum in January Prime Minister Trudeau promised Canada’s “brain power” as an incentive to invest in this country. It is hard to see how the Prime Minister can fulfill his promise to the world when government immigration policy disdains maturity, experience and “brains”. Turkish Canadian Chamber of Commerce recommends that the government repeal Express Entry and return to the old system of objective, unbiased and non-arbitrary qualification of immigrants.

Congratulations To Canada’s New Immigration Minister

John McCallum, Minister of Citizenship & Minister

Immigration Minister John McCallum

A wave of hope and optimism is sweeping across the world that the appointment of Liberal John McCallum as the new Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Refugees heralds a return to the era of merit-based immigration policies and a more humanitarian approach to refugees for Canada. The former government had replaced the decades-old objective merit system with the so-called Express Entry, a type of selection process that works like a lottery and places the selection of immigrants subjectively in the hands of civil servants who decide every month who will receive an invitation to apply. Since January 1, 2015 Express Entry discriminated against older-than-30 applicants and overwhelmingly favoured citizens of English-speaking countries and those with Canadian education and experience. Since January 1st hundreds perhaps thousands of highly-educated and experienced professionals from all walks of life have found their dreams of settling in Canada extinguished on a static Job Bank of profiles that Canada’s employers rarely use to recruit staff. It’s a contradiction in terms how immigrants with little or no work experience or on the job-training can be expected to be assets for Canada’s economic development.

Renaming the ministry Citizenship Immigration and Refugees is also a cue that our new government will return to Canada’s traditional humanitarian approach to the handling of refugee applications. Congratulations to Prime Minister Trudeau and Minister McCallum for their bold move to settle 25,000 Syrian refugees. While it pales in comparison to the over 2 million refugees Turkey has accommodated, it’s a step in the right direction.

G20 Summit In Antalya Reconfirms Turkey’s Strategic Importance

The G20 Economic Summit in Antalya brought world leaders together at the beautiful resort city of Antalya on the Mediterranean Coast. The event was personally hosted by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau seemed to be the event’s star attraction, breaking the selfies record of G20 meetings.

G20 Antalya

Trudeau, Obama and David Cameron with Turkish President Erdogan

Trudeau G20

Summit’s Star Attraction Was Prime Minister Trudeau

Turkish History Website Launched

As part of its commitment to a cultural exchange between the two nations Turkish Canadian Chamber of Commerce has just launched a website designed to inform the public on history of the Ottoman Empire. OttomanTurks.org is a collection of information, pictures and videos on various aspects of the empire that preceded the modern Turkish Republic.

New Book About Ottoman History A Compendium of Sound Business Advice

A newly-published business e-book is based on tactics and strategy used by Ottoman Turks to build and expand the Ottoman Empire, one of the longest-lasting empires in history. The author believes that the wisdom, and organizational and military skills, of Ottoman Turks can be adapted to meet entrepreneurial and managerial challenges of the 21st century. The book also dispels some misconceptions on Turkish history by pointing out that Ottoman Turks established history’s first multicultural state, the first welfare state, and history’s first free trade agreement, with France. Click picture for other details.

Ottoman Turks

BC’s Ocean Seeding Technology Goes Turkish


Oceanea Environmental Solutions

Hakan and Pelin Karakoyun


Turkish Entrepreneurs Invest In Oceanea Environmental Solutions

Hakan and Pelin Karakoyun, two young Turkish entrepreneurs, have become partners in British Columbia’s unique high technology solution to seed Eastern Mediterranean and the Black Sea. Graduates of the University of Istanbul in pharmaceutical sciences, the couple runs a successful pharmaceutical business in Turkey. As partners they will head the new Victoria, BC-based Oceanea Turkey that will actively market Canada’s unique technology to increase ocean harvest in Turkey as well as countries in Southern Europe, North Africa and Southeast Asia. Surrounded by the Black Sea, The Aegean and the Mediterranean on 3 sides, Turkey is home to some of the most delectable seafood in the world whose quantity is fast being depleted. First implemented on the BC coast about a decade ago for salmon, Oceanea’s unique patented technology has been proven to double fish harvest. Currently negotiating contracts in South America, Turkey is the company’s second overseas business interest. The Karakoyuns’ investment is expected to create numerous high tech jobs in British Columbia. The connection between the parties was made by the Turkish Canadian Chamber of Commerce who also provided support services to facilitate the investment.

Become A Member Today and Start Connecting With Turkey

BC’s High Tech Ocean Seeding Project Drawing Turkish Investors

Oceanea, one of British Columbia’s several unique high tech projects designed to seed the ocean to increase fish has drawn prospective investors from Turkey who’d like to see the project implemented in that country. Once a jewel of Mediterranean sea harvests, Turkish fisheries are also on the decline due to industrial pollution and over-fishing. A delegation from Oceanea and the Turkish Canadian Chamber of Commerce is planning to visit Turkey next spring to talk to Turkish government and the private sector. Some investors in BC’s high tech projects may be eligible for Canada immigration under the province’s investor immigration program. For details please contact the Chamber’s administration.

BC Sockeye Salmon

BC Sockeye Salmon

Turkey Threatens To Suspend Customs Union With European Union Over Free Trade Agreement With The United States

Turkey wants to be a beneficiary of the free trade agreement between the United States and the European Union, similar to the treaty Canada signed recently with the EU. Turkish Minister responsible for EU Affairs Volkan Bozkir demanded that the treaty must be made applicable to countries in a customs union with the EU like Turkey. Otherwise, he said, Turkey may suspend its customs union with the EU. Turkey entered into a customs union with the EU about 2 decades ago under the government of Prime Minister Tansu Ciller, presumed at the time to be an initial step to full EU membership. Turkish critics have blamed the customs treaty for stifling the Turkish manufacturing sector by  flooding the country with European imports and making Turkey’s membership in the EU redundant by giving EU all the benefits of Turkey’s membership in the European Union. Proponents of the customs union claim that Turkish exports to the EU have increased substantially because of it, offsetting any disadvantage. Turkey’s relations with the EU have been strained for the past few years over Europe’s reluctance to admit Turkey as a full member.

 Businesses Petition Industry Minister James Moore To Stop CASL

Over 1200 businesses across Canada have petitioned Industry Minister James Moore to revise CASL, the Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation scheduled to go into effect on Canada Day, July 1, 2014. CASL will outlaw sending all electronic messages of a commercial nature without prior consent of recipients, with some exceptions. Violators will be subject to fines of up to 10 million dollars. Petitioners see the legislation as a form of Internet censorship that will do nothing to stop spam while penalising legitimate Canadian businesses. The law is broadly worded, applying to all messages regardless of ‘whether there is an expectation of profit or not.’ Here is what the Globe and Mail said about CASL

EDC Opens USD$10 Million Credit To Turkish Leasing Company

Export Development Canada announced March 25, 2014 a USD$10 Million credit line to a major Turkish leasing company for purchases from Canada. The company is engaged in leasing aircraft, transportation vehicles, construction machinery, medical and office equipment, electronic equipment and others. According to EDC the Federal Government’s Global Markets Action Plan identified Turkey as a strategic market of opportunity for Canadian firms. An EDC spokesman said the credit will make it easier for small and medium sized Canadian firms to win equipment sales “in the booming Turkish market.” Members contact Chamber administration for further details.

Your Reliable Carrier To Turkey, Europe And Beyond

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Where Canada is connecting with Turkey…

The Turkish Canadian Chamber of Commerce was incepted in the summer of 2009 in Vancouver, British Columbia, with the endorsement of the British Columbia Chamber of Commerce. Founding members have a mission to encourage and support the development of bilateral trade and investment between Canada and Turkey, with particular focus on the growing economies of Western Canada. While numerous Canadian companies have been involved in mega projects in Turkey, and an increasing number of Turks have been investing in Canadian businesses and real estate, the Chamber believes that the present level of trade and investment between the two countries represents only a fraction of its full potential.

In cooperation with associations in Canada and Turkey, the Turkish Canadian Chamber of Commerce offers a number of professional services to Canadian and Turkish businesses and individuals in support of their objectives.

Turkey, Gateway Into Eastern Europe, Middle East and Central Asia

Strategically situated between Europe and Asia, and with a population estimated at about 80 million, Turkey is an economic powerhouse of Eastern Europe and the Middle East. It’s one of the few countries that’s self-sufficient in food and a rapidly growing industrial player. An associate member of the European Union, Turkey is a gateway into the developing markets of the Balkans, Middle East and Central Asia. Thousands of Turkish entrepreneurs, contractors, engineers and workers are actively engaged in building the infrastructure and economies of countries such as the Russian Federation, Romania, Bulgaria, Iraq and Syria.

Turkey Opens Bosphorus Chunnel, Signs Up For Nuclear Plants With Japan

A 150-year-old Ottoman dream was realised on October 29, 2013, Anniversary of the Proclamation of Turkish Republic, when Prime Minister Erdogan opened Marmaray, the underground railway that links Istanbul’s Asian and European coasts. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe attended the opening ceremony for the project that was completed for the most part by Japanese contractors. After the ceremony the two prime ministers sat down to the business of energy, Turkey signing up for 4 nuclear plants to be built with Japanese technology. Having spent millions of dollars to peddle CANDU reactors in the 1990’s, a project abandoned by the previous Turkish government, Canada was the big loser in the deal.

Japanese PM Abe and Turkish PM Erdogan

Japanese PM Abe and Turkish PM Erdogan

Turkey Turns To Canada To Exploit Shale Gas Reserves ( Business News)

Turkey Is Hot For Hiring Great Talent (article by Mark Hamill)

Turkey and its neighbours

Turkey and its neighbours

A land of opportunity

With its rapidly growing economy and population Turkey has an insatiable appetite for energy and energy-related projects and products, including renewable and alternative sources. Although oil is produced in the south-east it barely meets a quarter of the country’s demand. Surrounded on three sides with oil-producing countries, it’s conceivable that significant oil reserves may exist in eastern Turkey. Natural gas is imported from Russia, while the country is on a constant lookout for cheaper and safer supplies of energy products. Turkey imports coal from British Columbia and grains from the prairie provinces.

In the 1980’s and 90’s Turkey relied heavily on the “build, operate, leave” model to build public projects with foreign capital. With the extensive privatisation of state enterprises within the past decade, liberalisation of foreign investment and ownership, and the influx of foreign funds, the emphasis has shifted to licensing, joint ventures, transfer of technology and know-how in both the manufacturing and services sectors.

Turkey’s urban population has a growing penchant for Western brand names in consumer products. Many North American brands such as Century 21, McDonald’s and Starbucks are already there. Licensing opportunities exist for Canadian brands and franchisors to expand into Turkey’s growing consumer market as well as the emerging markets in neighbouring countries. Of particular importance is the developing relationship between Turkey and Northern Iraq with its oil wealth.

Turkey world’s 6th biggest tourist destination

According to the United Nations Tourism Organisation Turkey is the world’s 6th biggest tourist destination with 35.7 million visitors on record in 2012. France topped the list with 83 million visitors, with United States as the runner-up followed by China, Spain and Italy. Istanbul was also named the 6th most popular city in the world with 10.3 million visitors in 2012 after Bangkok, London, Paris, Singapore and New York. Figures include cruise-ship visitors, with Turkey’s Aegean Port City of Izmir (Ancient Smyrna) increasing in importance as a port of call. While only 5 cruise-ships visited Izmir in 2003 with 3271 visitors, this number increased in 2012 to 286 visits and 150,048 visitors. By comparison the Port of Vancouver recorded 191 vessels in 2012 with 327,438 disembarked passengers.

Izmir, Turkey's Western Port

Izmir, Turkey’s Western Port

Investing In Western Canada

The West is growing. With British Columbia’s wealth of natural gas and strategic location, and Saskatchewan as Canada’s new oil depot, there has never been a better time to invest in Western Canada. With its scenic beauty similar to Istanbul’s and mild climate that even beats Turkey’s largest metropolis, Vancouver is a magnet that attracts students and Turkey’s affluent. Business immigration from Turkey is expected to grow under provincial nominee programs, while some of the shortages for skilled labour in the four provinces may be met by Turkey’s growing pool of young secondary school graduates.

British Columbia: Gateway to the Asia-Pacific Region

Many people are attracted to British Columbia’s extraordinary beauty and mild climate while others are lured by its dramatic economic growth. Almost a million square kilometers in size, Canada’s Pacific province offers unbeatable opportunities to investors looking for a gateway location between North America and Asia. The province offers incentives for investments in R&D, machinery and equipment, mining exploration, film and new media, and provincial tax credits, exemptions and deductions for business investment and innovation.

BC’s Economic Highlights

  • GDP in 2006 of $180 billion and total goods exported worth $33.5 billion
  • Foreign companies spent $10 billion for business expansion, modernization and new facilities in British Columbia in 2006 and 2007
  • Home to several thriving and burgeoning high technology sectors
  • Over $1.5 billion invested in R&D over the past few years making the province a world leader in several technology fields, including advanced energy, and life sciences
  • 6 universities, 3 university colleges, 12 community colleges and 5 provincial technology or technical institutes have shaped a high quality, diverse labour pool of 2.4 million which is continuously expanding in line with the needs of high-growth sectors
  • Over 107,250 skilled workers immigrated to British Columbia between 2001 and 2006, enriching BC’s international networks, cultural diversity and multi-lingual capabilities
  • The advanced energy sector includes the largest hydrogen and fuel cell division in the world—Ballard Power Systems, representing 75% of Canadian fuel cell and hydrogen based R&D expenditures and 69% of Canada’s employment in the sector
  • Close to 1,000 non-Canadian firms are serving their international customers from BC
  • Vancouver ranks 3rd out of 215 cities worldwide and 1st in North America for quality of living (Mercer Human Resource Consulting 2006)

Important Economic Sectors in BC

  • Information and Communications Technology
  • Biotechnology and Life Sciences
  • Advanced Manufacturing
  • Value-Added Wood Products
  • Agri-Food and Fish Products
  • Energy & Power Technologies
  • Mining
  • Contact Centres and Business Process Operations
  • Film and TV Production
  • Resort Tourism


 International Business Centre-Vancouver