According to the January GTS (General trade system) foreign trade data, which was announced by TURKSTAT in cooperation with the Ministry of Trade; Turkey's exports in January 2021 increased by 2.3% compared to the same period of the previous year USD 15.05 billion, while imports decreased by 5.9% in the same period amounted to 18.08 billion USD. Thus, the foreign trade deficit decreased by 32.8% between January 2020 and January 2021 and became 3.03 billion USD. The ratio of exports to imports increased from 76.5% to 83.2% in the period in question.
Germany was the country to which we export the most in January, followed by the USA, Italy and England. While exports to the 27 countries that make up the European Union increased by 21.6% to USD 7.19 billion, it is observed that the share of the EU in our total exports decreased from 43.8% to 43%. In import items; China took the first place in January 2021, followed by Russia, Germany and Iraq. While the share of capital and consumption goods in total imports increased in January, the share of intermediate (raw materials) goods decreased. While the share of high-tech exports in our total exports was 3%, the share of imports of the same group in our total imports was 13.6%.
According to STS (Special trading system), Turkey's exports increased by 3.1% in January 2021 compared to the same period of the previous year USD 14.28 billion, while imports decreased by 3.7% in the same period in USD 17.83 billion has been realized. The ratio of exports to imports was 80.1% in the said period.
While net exports decreased throughout 2020, imports increased, and in this case, the increase in import demand due to loose financial conditions and the increase in gold imports were effective. After the normalization period, while a recovery in the export trend was observed during the opening of the economies, the downside risks in this area increased with the reactivation of Covid-19 measures. Whereas; It is observed that the foreign trade balance tends to improve with the decrease in imports and the increase in exports when entering 2021. In terms of our export markets, the situation regarding the course of the virus epidemic may still be an element of negativity. Apart from this, it is expected that the more comfortable environment expected to occur with vaccination regarding the epidemic will increase economic activity. On the import side, although the course of oil prices is critical, especially in terms of our energy bill, we will monitor the demand balancing effect due to tightening policies on the non-energy import side.
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