A World Bank mission examined Gaziantep, chosen as one of the most competitive 7 cities around the world with its entrepreneurship and innovativeness, for the Competitive Cities Knowledge Base (CCKB) project, which aims to understand what makes cities competitive, document the experience of successful cities, and highlight aspects of that experience from which other cities around the world can learn.
The mission comprising of Z. Joe Kulenovic, a Senior Private Sector Development Consultant, and Austin Kilroy, a Private Sector Development Specialist in the World Bank stayed in Gaziantep for one week. In the meantime, the mission visited Silkroad Development Agency, Gaziantep Greater Municipality, Gaziantep Chamber of Industry, Gaziantep Chamber of Commerce, Southeastern Anatolian Exporters' Union, Gaziantep University and leading industrial companies and held meetings with key officials and representatives of these institutions about the secrets behind the success of Gaziantep.
A general meeting was also organized with the participation of all relevant stakeholders on September 1, 2014 at the Silkroad Development Agency Meeting Hall. At the meeting, Mr. Kulenovic stated: "The Bank has chosen the Turkish city of Gaziantep as an interesting case study of an economically successful city in the Europe and Central Asia Region (ECA). According to our city-level data, Gaziantep has outperformed the broader Turkish economy, as well as most other cities in the ECA region in terms of GDP and job growth. We anticipate that Gaziantep’s experience may offer useful lessons for other, comparable cities around the world seeking to improve their economic outcomes. Gaziantep’s experience will become part of the World Bank’s global Competitive Cities Knowledge Base. As such, it is likely to attract the attention of economic development practitioners and analysts worldwide, and to often be cited as a global best practice in economic development at the city level. This is a unique chance to showcase the tremendous progress Gaziantep’s (and Turkey’s) economy has made in recent years, as well as to provide a valuable learning opportunity for the world’s mayors and other local officials focused on improving their cities’ economic performance and job creation. "
At the meeting, the participants contributed to the project by reflecting their institutional perspectives and personal experiences regarding the reasons of success Gaziantep has been experiencing in the recent years.