Major Turkish tech event begins in Black Sea province

6-day Teknofest features technology competitions in dozens of categories.

Major Turkish tech event begins in Black Sea province

Teknofest, Türkiye’s premier aerospace and technology festival, kicked off in the country's Black Sea city of Samsun on Tuesday. 

Organized at the Samsun Carsamba Airport by the Turkish Technology Team Foundation (T3 Foundation) and Türkiye's Industry and Technology Ministry, the six-day event showcases activities such as air shows with warplanes, drones and helicopters, as well as seminars, summits, and competitions.

The 2022 festival will hold technology competitions in more than 40 different categories including semiconductors, UAVs, satellites, rockets, robotics, and artificial intelligence.

Selcuk Bayraktar, the chairman of T3 Foundation, told the opening ceremony that stronger countries often oppress the weak, adding that his objective is to bring justice and peace in the world for which developing advanced technology is a must.

"The pain of Bosnia, Karabakh and Palestine, where the entire West turned its back, is still fresh in our hearts," he said.

Bayraktar also spoke of the destruction of Iraq and Afghanistan in order to "bring democracy."

"In our northern neighbor Ukraine, women and children continue to be murdered in front of the whole world," he added.

Mustafa Varank, the Turkish industry and technology minister, said nearly 600,000 people applied to be a part of the event's contests, and 5,252 teams advanced to final phases. The winners will be awarded with 10 million Turkish liras ($550,000) in total, he added.

Varank said their efforts are important for Türkiye's technologic development and future.

Ismail Demir, the head of Türkiye's Defense Industries' Presidency, said countries cannot be powerful in the defense field without advancements in technology.

The attendees are transferred to the event from the city center by domestically-manufactured electric buses.

Last year, the event was held at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport, while its first international version was held in Baku, Azerbaijan this May.