Furniture exports hit $2 bln in first half of year
The country’s main furniture export destinations were Iraq, Germany, the United States, Israel and France, according to data compiled from Istanbul Furniture, Paper and Forestry Products Exporters’ Association. The main export products were cribs, furniture for kids’ bedrooms, dining and sitting rooms.
Ahmet Güleç, the head of the association, said the upward trend was expected to continue for many years.
The Turkish furniture sector ranks eighth in the international market, but it wants to climb to fifth place, he said.
“We believe that we can do it very easily; we need support for promotion and branding,” he added.
Recalling the sector’s export expectation of $4 billion for this year, he said the first-half figures proved this target.
However, rising costs of raw materials, such as fabric, medium-density fibreboard and chipboard, as well as electricity price hikes could pull down sales, Güleç said.
Gov’t supports local production
Recently, the Turkish government limited exports of raw materials used in furniture production, including flakeboard, oriented strand board, fiberboard and some types of wood.
These materials were entered in the list of the Goods Subject to Registered Export, according to the country’s Official Gazette published on June 4.
Turkey’s chipboard and fiberboard exports increased by 71 percent during the pandemic period.
Exports of raw materials to China, the largest furniture exporter in the world in normal times, hinders Turkey’s furniture manufacture, the sectoral associations complained in recent months.
Turkey’s buoyant furniture sector managed to maintain its strong export performance in 2020 despite the coronavirus. Turkish furniture exports last year hit $3.5 billion, unchanged from the previous year, bucking the challenges of the pandemic.
Last year’s figures made Turkey the eighth-largest furniture exporter in the world, close on the heels of the United States ($4.7 billion) and Canada ($3.7 billion).
Turkey is also the world’s 13th largest furniture manufacturer.
Iraq, Germany, Saudi Arabia, the United States, Israel, France, Libya, the United Kingdom, Romania and the Netherlands were Turkish furniture’s main export markets in 2020.
Modoko, Turkey’s oldest furniture showroom, prepared the infrastructure for a permanent virtual fair.
Over the last two decades, Turkish furniture exports surged 18 folds.
Modoko wants to open a furniture showroom in the United States this year, similar to the one it already has in Dubai.
Besides boosting exports, the sector wants to create a perception of Turkish furniture and enhance its brand value abroad.