In the 90s, attention focused on Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs). Flexibility and innovative capacity of these kinds of firms offered competitive advantages in context of global challenge. Nearly 99 % percent of industrial companies in Turkey are SMEs. They account for 53 % of employment and 38 % of GNP. These firms respond quickly to structural changes and adapt easily to changing demand.
In order to orientate these firms toward global markets, the Undersecretariat for Foreign Trade created a system known as "Sectoral Foreign Trade Companies (SFTC)". This organizational structure, encourages SMEs in their ambition to open to the outside markets and engage in foreign trade activities. Main element of this new model is to create a framework in which certain numbers of SMEs come together and form a new joint company. Legislation regarding SFTC was put into effect in December 1996.
Under current legislation; each companies share is limited to 10 percent of the total capital of SFTC.
Founders may be granted the status of STFC for if they fulfill the following requirements :
For the Developing Regions, share for each company is limited to 20 percent. Sectoral Foreign Trade Company Status can be obtained if the founders fulfill the requirements below:
Today, 31 SFTCs are in operational status.