Turkey: Tug-of-War with Eternity

                                   A bridge linking the European side and the Asian side

Istanbul, aged two thousand years old but still a vibrant cosmopolitan city, and one of my must-visit top destinations, here I come. 

The Istanbullus are very much in their own center of gravity, receiving foreign visitors in (luke) warm manner; and some turns cold shoulder. Perhaps, 6.5 million tourists (in 2007) flooded Istanbul city make them less enthusiasm for foreigners.  

There is a bridge over the Bosphorus Strait linking the European side and Asian side, the interface and the mixture of civilization has inevitably engulfed Istanbul in an endless tug-of-war between the East and the West, between Islamic and Christianity, between ancient and contemporary, and between certainty and uncertainty of their own identity. It seemed like the Turkey's application to enter the European Union (previously the European Communities) has also becoming a long march of tug-of-war since 1987.

The rise and fall of the Roman Byzantine Empire and later by the multicultural Muslim Ottoman Empire nourished the culture in Istanbul, produced Mr. Orhan Pamuk, a Nobel Prize winner in Literature in 2006. His writing has a lot of reminiscence of the glorious past and depicting his brought-up city like a thin air of melancholy.     

And Istanbul is situated at the hilly location where the modern asphalt roads and the old cobblestone pavements are free flowing up and down according to the land structure. Some alleys snaking and sloping into the residential apartments are even very steep. 

Mr. Noharuddin Nordin, CEO of Matrade (right) dropped by our booth

Surprise!! Our former Deputy Prime Minister, Tun Musa Hitam (middle) came to the Booth. Mr. Tamizi, representing  Matrade on the leftIs this guy, Fatih Gemi (staff from the opposite booth) resembling the model in our poster? 

The 12th Musiad Exposition is well organized, unexpectedly attracted quite some foreign visitors from the neighborhood countries besides the domestic's. The Trade Show is in conjunction with the International Business Forum (IBF), hence it brought along a lot of decision makers. 

Despite the wide range of industries covered in this Exhibition, FingerTec received quality inquiries from Kosovo Republic, Pakistan, Algeria, apart from the locals. Thumbs up also for Matrade (Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation) for their excellent works in arranging a Pavilion for Malaysia's exhibitors. 

The second day after the Trade Show, I have a meeting with one of my prospective customers in his office in Perp Tic. Merkezi in Okmeydani Istanbul.  It is a very large 13-storey complex that housed approximately 5 thousands mainly electrical or electronic products merchants' offices. It is common for buyers and sellers to involve in tug-a-war in business dealings in Turkey, and the whole process took me a 6-long hour. At the end, I gulped at least ten cups of Turkish Tea over their hospitality. 

Turkish Tea, Turkish delights

by Teh Hon Seng, CEO, FingerTec HQ

                                   A bridge linking the European side and the Asian side Istanbul, aged two thousand years old but stil...