Syrian parliament puts 30 pct tax on Turkish products

Syrian parliament puts 30 pct tax on Turkish products

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Syrian parliament puts 30 pct tax on Turkish products

This photo shows a border crossing with Syria in the southern province of Hatay. The Syrian parliament has decided to levy a 30 percent tax on ‘made in Turkey’ products entering Syria. Such a tax will harm both Syria and Turkey, exporters say. AA photo

Syria’s Parliament has approved legislation imposing a 30 percent tax on all “made in Turkey” products, according to Syria’s official news agency SANA. Proceeds from the tax will be funneled toward the economic development of Syrian villages, according to the source.

“There is no rationale behind this 30 percent tax on Turkish goods. This will hurt both sides, but the Syrian population will really be the ones to suffer,” said Salih Yıldız, a board member of the Syrian-Turkish Business Council, in a phone interview with the Daily News.

Yıldız said Syria has witnessed a 19 percent fall in exports to Turkey this year, while Turkey witnessed a 12 percent decrease in its exports.

“For Syria this 19 percent fall is a catastrophe, especially when considering last year there was more than a 30 percent increase in Syrian exports to Turkey,” reiterated Yıldız.

Turkish exports fall

Turkey and Syria had nearly $2.5 billion in trade volume in the last year, according to official data.
Meanwhile, exports from Turkey to Syria are still continuing, but there was a dramatic 40 percent decrease in November, according to Economy Minister Çağlayan.

This latest move by Syria comes after its decision to suspend its free trade agreement with Turkey following Turkey’s move to impose sanctions on Syria. Turkey decided to implement sanctions due to a political dispute between the two countries over the Syrian regime’s crackdown on political dissidents.