Global uncertainties and geopolitical risks continued at a higher pace in 2016 in light of elections in the United States and Europe, Brexit, refugee crisis, the Syrian conflict, and terrorist attacks. From economic perspective, 2016 was marked by sluggish growth, the inability of commodity prices to stage a lasting recovery, contracting trade volumes, and weakening emerging market currencies against the US dollar with the expectation of a rate hike by Fed.
In the national arena, the heinous coup attempt took its place in Turkish political history as a full-fledged disgrace. This internal threat that we were faced as a country demonstrated that we can overcome even the toughest challenges through national unity and solidarity. Staying in close contact with our international partners during the darkest days of this crisis, we reached the consensus that Turkey has always been able to overcome every hardship throughout its history and will continue to grow strongly over the long term. We will continue to work for a stronger Turkey in 2017 while preserving our core values. At Turcas, we will do everything in our power to achieve this goal, especially by boosting investment and employment opportunities.
In an increasingly volatile financial market environment where uncertainties impact investment decisions, Turcas continued to move forward with its investment projects in line with its strategy. Shell & Turcas, our 30% subsidiary operating in the fuel retail and lubricants sector, achieved strong profitability as well as above sector growth in 2016. 800 MW Denizli Natural Gas Fired Combined Cycle Power Plant, owned by our 30% subsidiary RWE & Turcas South Power Generation, increased its operational efficiency by leveraging its advanced technology competitive edge. In the renewable energy segment, we are pleased to reach a capacity exceeding our own expectations at our geothermal power plant project in Aydın.
Last year, we announced that sustainable development has officially become a strategic priority at Turcas Petrol, and we made a commitment for working even harder to combat climate change. To this end, we explore state-of-the-art technologies for our country as well as our world, while focusing more on efficient resource management in our business models. While collaborating with our global partners, we will focus on internalizing the innovation culture at all our investments and executing social responsibility projects that create value for our society.
We plan to continue developing value-added projects as Turkey’s leading and reputable energy company, backed by our robust, deeply rooted 86-year old history, strong corporate governance approach, and the dedicated efforts of our well-experienced staff. We all owe Turkey to make it a stronger, more resilient and prosperous nation. I would like to thank our stakeholders, employees and shareholders for their contributions and support on this journey.
Chairman of the Board of Directors
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