This guide provides an overview of Turkey’s economy, including the country’s primary imports and exports.
Turkey Economy Overview
Turkey exports $177 billion worth of goods each year and is currently ranked the 29th largest export economy in the world.
The country has a negative trade balance of -$25 billion after deducting annual imports of $202 billion from its export total. Between 2013 and 2018, Turkey managed to increase its exports by $14.5 billion.
The economy of Turkey is defined as an “emerging market economy” by the IMF, with a GDP of $761 billion and a GDP per capita of $9,225 according to World Bank figures.
Turkey’s Top Exports
Here is a breakdown of the most important products exported by Turkey, both commodities and other notable exports.
- Crude petroleum – $3.65 billion
- Refined petroleum – $3.42 billion
- Raw iron bars – $3.33 billion
- Gold – $3.21 billion
- Hot-rolled iron – $2.34 billion
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Other Notable Exports
- Cars – $12.9 billion
- Delivery trucks – $5.38 billion
- Vehicle parts – $4.63 billion
- Jewelry – $4.29 billion
- Non-knit women’s suits – $2.94 billion
Turkey’s Top Imports
Here is a breakdown of the most important products imported by Turkey, both commodities and other notable imports.
- Refined petroleum – $12.4 billion
- Gold – $11.3 billion
- Scrap iron – $6.47 billion
- Petroleum gas – $3.72 billion
- Coal briquettes – $3.53 billion
Other Notable Imports
- Vehicle parts – $6.45 billion
- Cars – $6.11 billion
- Broadcasting equipment – $2.78 billion
- Propylene polymers – $2.78 billion
- Packaged Medicaments – $2.53 billion
Details on Turkey’s Exports/Imports
Turkey is the world’s 17th largest exporter of gold, with a 1.05% share of an annual market worth $305 billion.
More than half of Turkey’s gold goes to two countries only, namely the United Arab Emirates (27%) and the United Kingdom (24.5%).
Raw Iron Bars
Turkey is the biggest exporter of raw iron bars in the world. It controls 18.3% of the annual export market worth $18.2 billion. The country’s closest rival, with a 7.32% market share, is Italy.
Turkey leads the way in wheat flours exports, enjoying a 20.8% share of an annual export market worth $4.85 billion.
Kazakhstan is Turkey’s closest export rival with a 9.25% share. However, Turkey maintains its competitive edge as a key player of grain in this region with two modern flour mills operating close to important seaports.
Spain is the leading exporter of citrus fruits with a 27% market share, while Turkey is the fourth largest exporting country with a 6.17% share of the annual export market worth $15.2 billion.
Russia receives 32.7% of Turkey’s citrus fruits, with Iraq (14.6%) and Ukraine (9.61%) trailing in 2nd and 3rd place.
Interesting Facts About Turkey
- Despite most of the Turkish population being Muslim, it has been recognized as a secular nation rather than a Muslim country since 1927.
- The city of Istanbul spans two continents, with 97% in Asia and 3% of the city officially part of Europe. Istanbul is also not the capital of Turkey — it is Ankara.
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Sources and Further Reading
- All figures are based on OEC 2018 calculations and projections and World Bank numbers unless otherwise stated.
- Learn more about the state of world government debt from our country debt clock pages.
- See our global economic indicator guide to more than 45 other countries.
- Get our full guide to trading commodities.
All currency is reported in US dollars.