The CEO of GM, Rick Wagoner, has said that GM now regrets its decision to end production in the Izmir factory: "We are now sorry that we shut down our factory in Turkey. Because it is actually now that that country's star has begun to shine." Wagoner also talked about the lively car market in Turkey, saying "Turkey has a young population and a hungry market."
"If we are not successful in Turkey, we will not be successful in Eastern Europe"
GM revealed that following the success of the Astra Sedan in Europe, it had considered Poland, Turkey, and China in the run-up to deciding where to start new production to keep up with demand. The choice to stick with Turkey was compounded by the strength of Turkey's national market, as well as its proximity to eastern Europe. GM's marketing director for Eastern Europe, Thomas Owsianski, said last weekend that Turkey might well be a larger market for GM than Russia, noting also "Turkey is a very open market....If we are not successful in Turkey, we will not be successful in Eastern Europe."