Wondering what's so special about this news? Well, Turkey is one of Europe's top ten auto producers, with large companies such as Ford, Toyota, Honda and Fiat building passenger cars in the country especially addressed to export markets.
Indirectly, a decreasing export market in Turkey means reduced exports for all these automakers which were also affected by the economic turmoil in other European and non-European countries. Ford is surely the best example, as the American soap-opera, which initially included Ford too, made the headlines for months.
Ford Otosan, the Turkish manufacturer that currently build vehicles for Ford, Renault, Toyota and Hyundai, announced last December a massive cost-cutting program to save money and align production with the market demand. Two factories belonging to Ford Otosan suspended their activity between December 20, 2008 and January 12, 2009.
The Turkish automaker recorded a major sales decline in November 2008, with vehicle production reduce to 59,082 units and passenger car manufacturing down by 54 percent. More importantly, both the domestic and the export markets were affected, including the European Union, often referred to as Turkey's largest new car export market.