FOREIGN TRADE DEFICIT SHRINKS, FIGURES SHOW
Turkey’s foreign trade deficit dropped sharply in June, the Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat) announced on July 31. TurkStat said last month the figure fell 42.5 percent to $3.17 billion year-on-year, down from $5.5 billion in June 2018.
The country’s exports ($11.08 billion) and imports ($14.26 billion) in June both dropped, by 14.3 percent and 22.7 percent, respectively, on a yearly basis. The exports-to-imports coverage ratio rose to 84.9 percent last month, up from 66.8 percent the previous June.
Meanwhile, the country’s exports in the first half of 2019 rose 1.2 percent to reach $83.7 billion and imports dropped 19.8 percent to $98.56 billion. The first half’s foreign trade gap narrowed 63.6 percent to $14.85 billion, down from a $40.8 billion deficit in the same period last year.
July preliminary exports figures indicate 8.3 percent rise At the end of every month, TurkStat releases the final foreign trade figures for that month, as the Trade Ministry announces preliminary general trade system data in the first week of every month. Turkey’s exports surged 8.32 percent to reach $15.96 billion in July, said Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan on August 2. The figure under the general trade system makes July 2019 the best-performing July in the country’s export history, she said.
In the same month, Turkey’s imports amounted to $19.3 billion, down nearly 8 percent on an annual basis. “Despite global developments, Turkey continues to raise exports thanks to government actions and exporters’ efforts,” Pekcan stressed.
For calculating foreign trade data, two different methods are used - the special trade system and the general trade system. Calculations based on the special trade system do not include free zones or customs warehouses. The general trade system is a wider concept, including customs warehouses, all types of free zones, free circulation areas, and premises for inward processing.
In July, the trade deficit dropped by 46.54 percent to $3.33 billion, on an annual basis, Pekcan said. She stressed the rate of exports meeting imports reached 82.7 percent in July, up from 70.3 percent the previous July.
Germany, the UK and Iraq were main destinations for Turkey’s exports, she noted. “In July, our exporters succeeded in reaching 212 markets,” the minister said.
The trade minister said that Turkey’s exports also rose by 3.07 percent to $104.2 billion in the first seven months of the year. The trade deficit in the first 7 months was $25.5 billion, Pekcan said. The minister also said that using the Turkish lira in international trade increased in July to TRY 11.8 billion ($2.1 billion).