To some, the term communicates accomplishment in almost anything from financial planning to foreign policy, but “independence” is never a real possibility. It is Economics 101: Where there is division of labor there is interdependence, and in a globalized world, notwithstanding the sense of empowerment we get from continuous access to information, our actions are less independent than ever.
But when the boyish-looking businessman in his mid-forties spoke confidently of his independence from Turkey’s two major cities, I knew exactly what he meant. “We can deal directly with the world,” he said, “to export what I produce, I need no one to act as a go-between.” For the Anatolian Tigers, this is the gist of their success story. The rising industrialists of Turkey’s conservative heartland have taken pride in not relying on the stewardship of either the political authorities in Ankara or the business community in Istanbul, and Mustafa Boydak, the chairman of the Kayseri Chamber of Industrialists (KAYSO), is no exception.