What kept exports down in 2016?

Mehmet Büyükekşi, Chairman of Turkish Exporters' Assembly, along with Nihat Zeybekci, Minister of Economy, announced 2016 export figures in Ankara. Büyükekşi congratulated the exporters due to their efforts despite the circumstances.

Commenting on the export performance of Turkey in 2016, the Chairman told that “Every year there are different factors affecting our performance, this year they were the declining oil and commodity prices, ongoing conflict in our region and the decline in Turkish Lira.”

Buyukekşi then explained the factors in detail;

We sold more, but earned less

Due to low oil and commodity prices, unit price of exports worldwide has declined. Similarly, Turkey faced a drop in both export and import prices. In 2016, our quantity based exports rose by 4.1%, reaching 104 million tons. However, Turkey's average export price declined from 1.44 $/kg to 1.37 $/kg costing us around 3.5 billion $ in value.

A tough year for global economy

In 2016, global economy faced an even tougher year than 2015. Distortions in economy weakened both global trade and growth. According to WTO, quantity based global trade will rise by 1.7% in 2016, making its lowest growth in history, except 2009. Value based trade, however, dropped by 4% in the first 10 months of 2016.

Russian crisis and ongoing conflicts in Iraq and Libya

Another factor that harmed our exports is the ongoing crises around Turkey. The plane crisis caused our exports to Russia to drop by 51%, troubles in Iraq caused a 13% drop, and similarly in Libya we faced a loss of 36%. When we add these losses up, we see that these conflicts cost us another 3.5 billion $.

Rise of USD

The rise in U.S. Dollar against all currencies caused our exports in Euro and British Pound to drop in dollar value. Due to the rising USD/TRY, USD/EUR and USD/GBP parities we lost about 1.5 billion $.

If none of these happened our exports would rise by 5% instead of dropping and reach 150.8 billion $, exceeding our target for the year.

Published on Friday, January 6, 2017
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