Free zones post $22.6 billions in revenues
ANKARA - Anatolia News Agency
Ships wait at Izmir port, the heart of the exports from Turkey’s Aegean region. Hürriyet photoTurkey’s 19 free zones registered $22.6 billion in turnover last year and created employment for 54,000 people.
The country’s free zones, which have been operational in Turkey for 27 years, have played a crucial role in the country’s economy and in creating employment, according to the Economy Ministry. The free zones, which were first established in 1885 have now reached 19. They include the Aegean Free Zone, the Bursa Free Zone, the Mersin Free Zone, the Antalya Free Zone, the Istanbul Industrial and Trade Free Zone, the Kocaeli Free Zone, the İzmir Free Zone, and a host of others.
The Aegean Free Zone is the leader in terms of trade, with a trade turnover of $5.7 billion last year, according to the data. The Istanbul Industrial and Trade Free Zone is in second place with $3.6 billion in turnover, followed by the Mersin Free Zone in third place at $2.7 billion.
In terms of production, industrial goods take the lead among all the products produced in the country’s free zones. Some 87.19 percent of all goods produces were industrial goods. Plant products come in second at 6.16 percent, followed by processed agricultural products in third place at 5.77 percent.
Trade from the free zones was predominantly targeted locally in Turkey at 37.40 percent, in EU countries at 31.99 percent, and North Africa and the Middle East had an 8 percent share of the trade pie.