Posted on 14 February 2011
European Union road map ready for Istanbul‘s “Silicon Valley”
Turkey’s largest metropolis will host a ‘silicon valley’ for high-tech research. The European Union has chosen Istanbul for an extensive network of informatics companies to increase the size of the lucrative market.
The European Union has selected Istanbul to be its “Silicon Valley,” and the first steps to kick off the project will be taken very soon, it was announced at the 24th meeting of e-Transformation Turkey‘s executive body. The area around the Taksim and Maslak districts of Istanbul will be the primary target for authorities in establishing the new hub because many informatics companies are already located in the area.
Deputy Prime Minister Nazim Erken, who chaired the meeting, said non-governmental organizations representing the informatics sector, along with the Ministry of Industry and Trade, will cooperate during the settlement process. The Housing Development Administration of Turkey, or TOKI, will provide the land grants, and a business administration company will be founded and will operate for thirty years. Information and communications, telecommunications, biotechnology, nanotechnology and neuro technology will be the main sectors situated in the proposed technological centre.
Istanbul, pioneer of future ‘silicon valleys’
The software and service sectors, with the cooperation of the hardware sector, will be given priority in the development strategy. The project, which will be supervised by the e-Transformation Turkey executive body, will have three legs, the Silicon Valley, an information technology institution and an information technology council. Companies active in the computer and telecommunication sectors will come together, targeting research and development (R&D), innovation and cooperation. The Istanbul-based Silicon Valley will be the pioneer for other such information hubs planned for the Black Sea, central Anatolian, eastern Anatolian and south eastern Anatolian regions.
The administrator company will be founded by non-governmental organizations of the computer sector, chambers of trade and industry, and universities. Private sector representatives recommend the transformation of the planned administrator company into a public-private partnership in the future. Besides presenting foreign marketing opportunities to business enterprises in the so-called valley, the company will draw up necessary plans and create basic facilities as well.
A 50,000 square meter piece of land will initially be allocated for the Silicon Valley. Land reserved for the project could ultimately increase to 500,000 square meters (5.3 million sq feet) if there is a rise in demand.
Turkish Daily News 21 June 2008.(Abridged)