Foreign trade deficit shrank 67 percent in March
Turkey’s foreign trade deficit declined by a sharp 67.3 percent in March from a year ago to $1.97 billion, the country’s trade minister announced on March 4.
The country’s capital goods shipments were up 1.7 percent on an annual basis to $1.97 billion while consumer goods exports increased by 0.4 percent to reach $6.68 billion.
Motor vehicles exports had the largest share in total with $2.52 billion in March. The steel and iron sector’s exports increased to $987 million from $964 million a year ago.
Imports declined 17.8 percent in the month from a year ago to $18.3 billion in March, data also showed.
Turkey’s investment goods purchases from other countries fell by 27 percent on an annual basis to $2.1 billion and intermediate goods imports declined 13.3 percent to $14.4 billion.
In March, the country imported $1.8 billion worth of consumer goods, a 34 percent declined compared to the same month of 2018.
Over the same period, Turkey’s imports amounted to $50.5 billion with an annual decline of 21.46 percent.
In the three-month period, the exports-to-imports coverage ratio stood at 88.2 percent.
In the calculation of foreign trade statistics, 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 and customs warehouses.
The general trade system is a wider concept, including customs warehouses, all types of free zones, free circulation area and premises for inward processing.
In the New Economic Program, unveiled in September last year, the government forecast exports to be $182 billion in 2019. Its import estimate for this year is $244bn.
According to the government’s forecast, the country’s foreign trade deficit will be $62 billion at the end of this year.