Salim Haffar, who is among the active names of the power transmission sector both in Turkey and in the world, has been promoted to the position of Assistant General Manager from his position as International Sales and Marketing Director, which he has held for 8 years at the domestic gearbox giant İ-Mak Gearbox.
Haffar, who was elected as the President of EuroTrans, the largest organization in the world covering all the manufacturers of the power transmission sector, one year ago, also plays an active role in the Machinery Manufacturers’ Association (MIB). Haffar, who will continue his career at İ-Mak Gearbox at a higher level, represents both his company and Turkey in the American Gear Manufacturers Association.
Salim Haffar, one of the rare names recognized by the industry on a global scale, takes an active role in many organizations. Representing Turkey’s power transmission industry on a global scale with its sectoral knowledge, visionary structure and the power of I-Mak, Haffar shares the work they carry out in many organizations with our magazine.
Who is Salim Haffar?
I am a citizen of Morocco and France. In 2010, I graduated from the University of Lyon, Department of International Trade. I decided to settle in Turkey 10 years ago as a result of the experiences I gained in various countries during and after my education life. I took part in large international projects in different sectors in Turkey. I started working at İ-MAK Gearbox 8 years ago with the desire to carry my interest in industry and technology to professional life. I have been continuing my business life as Export Manager, as Assistant General Manager since January 2022. In this position, I continue my sales, export and marketing activities on behalf of İ-Mak Gearbox. I believe that in this new task I assumed with the trust of our company’s founding partners and board of directors, in the light of my international perspective and experience, I-MAK Gearbox will set an example for the sector with its innovative projects and works.
We have been working for many years at EuroTrans, the global umbrella organization of the power transmission industry. For the last 1 year, I have been the Chairman of the Board of EuroTrans. However, I continue to represent Turkey in various institutions and international associations.
With the motto that knowledge gains value when shared, I decided to establish an association in 2019 in order to contribute to the development of the country that hosted me. 2 years ago, I founded the TECHNOMADS Association, which aims to provide technical materials to universities and vocational high schools by operating in various locations in Turkey, and to provide education and internship opportunities to students, with the gathering of valuable sponsors and supporters. I am very happy to be able to support more than 6000 students with visits to 14 universities and dozens of vocational high schools by completing 15,000 kilometers in Turkey. I believe that the project, which continues despite the pandemic, will grow more with new supporters and contribute to the development of the country.
What is EuroTrans? Could you tell us about its importance in the sector and its work?
Founded 50 years ago in France, the EuroTrans Federation today represents a sector worth 40 billion with 600 active member companies and 8 national associations. EuroTrans, the largest organization in the world covering all manufacturers of the gearbox, bearing and power transmission industry, brings together leading companies on a global scale. EuroTrans, which has been working for 50 years with the vision of developing expertise in gear production and power transmission sector; we determine the quality standards for the sector, carry out researches, provide trainings, carry out lobbying activities on behalf of the sector and follow technological and economic values.
I am honored to be elected as the president of the federation in 2021 with the votes of the member companies after serving on the board of directors for about 2 years and to represent Turkey in this organization as a member of the Machinery Manufacturers Association.
You have an active role in the industry on a global scale. Can you evaluate the situation of the power transmission sector in Turkey?
In addition to working in the power transmission sector for many years, I can say that our industry has a very dynamic structure in Turkey, as both the President of EuroTrans and a person who takes an active role in the Machinery Manufacturers’ Association (MIB). However, despite this dynamic structure, I think that we have a long way to go in order to reach a competitive position in the world as a sector.
As İ-Mak Gearbox, we are working for the development of the sector in Turkey with the duties we have taken in both EuroTrans and MIB. As a result of our visits abroad, we see that the industry has developed, but there are deficiencies in standards and unity. As İ-MAK, we are carrying out studies that will lead to these.
With the order provided by various organizations all over the world, sector stakeholders create certain quality standards and added value. There are many different leagues for companies operating in the power transmission sector in Turkey. As the industry, we need to come together to set standards and produce higher quality and efficiency-oriented products. It is very important for us to develop a culture of competition among brands in Turkey by creating an understanding of efficiency and added value in terms of standards and unity. Abandoning the competition carried out by producing cheaper and identical products in the sector; It should be our priority to create an understanding of production in standards that will increase efficiency and added value.
As an industry, our share of the world market has not yet reached the level we need to be. We have a significant growth potential in exports. We should not forget that we have to represent our country as a union in the international market as a result of the value-added and standardized production approach we will achieve within the country. For this reason, I care that more companies become members of national and international institutions and I see it as a driving force for the development of our country.