According to Turkish Exporters' Assembly (TİM) data, Turkey's exports in December rose 10.1 percent and reached 13 billion 570 million dollars, marking December 2017 as the best December in Turkey's export history. Total exports in the year 2017, on the other hand, reached 157.1 billion dollars.
Chairman of TİM, Mehmet Büyükekşi told that, “We declared 2017 as 'Breakthrough Year in Exports' and we kept our promise as exporters. We believe, we will exceed 170 billion dollars this and break the export record of 2014. 2018 will be the record breaking year of exports. We will overthrow all records on annual and monthly basis, number of exporters and export markets, and we will contribute to growth, employment, and to our economy at the highest level. Global developments that are expected to happen in 2018 will support our exports. This year, 8 of the 10 conditions in the world economy are positive.”
In December, exports increased by 7.4 percent in quantity. The leading sector in December was automotive with 2.5 billion dollars. Automotive Industry was followed by Clothing and Apparel with 1.44 billion dollars and Chemical Materials with 1.37 billion dollars.
The European Union took the first place in Turkey's exports with a share of 47.7 percent. Exports to the EU were 6.5 billion dollars in December. EU was followed by the Middle Eastern countries with 2.4 billion dollars, and the African countries took third place with 1.2 billion dollars. Top 3 countries in December were Germany, Great Britain and Italy.
In 2017, automotive industry reached 28.5 billion dollars with an increase of 19 percent, machinery increased by 15 percent to 6.1 billion dollars, jewelry increased by 35 percent to 3.3 billion dollars, defense and aviation increased by 4 percent to 1.7 billion dollars, fruit and vegetable products increased by 7 percent to 1.4 billion dollars and ornamental plants reached 85 million dollars with and increase by 4 percent, all of which broke their sectoral export records in 2017.
Commenting on 2017 data, Mehmet Büyükekşi stated that, “The growth in global trade has made a tremendous contribution to Turkey's exports. We expect global trade to reach $ 16.5 trillion this year. Secondly, the support of our government gave us strength; support for R&D and Design Centers, support for membership to e-commerce portals, special passports and the increase in Eximbank's capital has helped exporters. As TİM, we set our priorities correctly and created our strategies accordingly. We increased our market diversity. We participated in the fairs, organized trade delegations, and purchase delegations. We have introduced target markets with the Export Compass meetings. We established the country and sector desks, and sought answers to the questions of our exporters. This year, like every year, we are going to focus on the importance of high value added exports. Our events such as 'Innovation and Entrepreneurship Week' and 'Design Week' will continue to serve this purpose.”