IMPORTS: While Turkey purchases vehicles and industrial parts mainly from the EU and other western markets, its biggest import items, gold and petroleum, originate mainly from other non-western markets. It is also noteworthy that Turkey’s primary import is gold. Beyond a traditionally high consumer demand, and demand from a strong jewellery sector, the surge in gold imports in recent years and particularly in 2020, is likely related to the crisis of the Turkish lira. In these circumstances, the Central Bank has been trying to diversify out of US dollars, while the country’s citizens try to diversify out of the lira; both trends leading to increased demand for gold.
EXPORTS: The EU is the primary export market for Turkey’s industrial goods, with jewellery and petroleum exports being directed to a significant degree to non-western markets. Motor vehicles are by far Turkey’s primary export good, which demonstrates the country’s success in positioning itself as a significant part of global value chains in the automotive industry.