In line with authorities and exporters’ goal to reach an all-time high in shipments by the end of the year and recent positive outcomes such as the figure of over $20 billion (TL 544.01 billion) in export volume for July, the president of the Turkish Exporters Assembly (TIM) suggested on Tuesday that they aim to increase food and agriculture exports from Turkiye to $50 billion by 2028.
Mustafa Gültepe, the president of TIM, stated that the food and agriculture sector will play a critical role in Turkiye ‘s goal of “reaching a $400 billion export target by 2028.”
“In 2022, we exported approximately $27 billion worth of food and agricultural products. For 2028, we aim to increase our food and agriculture exports to $50 billion. We are conducting all our projections and efforts in line with this goal,” Gültepe said.
The TIM Agriculture Board held its August meeting in the Black Sea province of Giresun, where the hazelnut harvest season was ongoing.
Speaking at the opening of the meeting, Gültepe recalled that Turkiye ‘s target for 2028 is $400 billion in goods and $200 billion in service exports.
Gültepe highlighted that the food and agriculture sector is among the most advantageous in terms of exports.
He also noted that Turkiye has a wealth of experience in this field, a diverse range of products, advanced technology, and a high-capacity industrial infrastructure for production.
Speaking to Anadolu Agency (AA), Gültepe reiterated the increasing significance of food and agricultural products globally due to climate change and said: “Therefore, we must turn this advantage into an opportunity for our country. If we can efficiently, utilize and manage our existing agricultural fields, we can provide consumers with abundant, high-quality and affordable food, while also earning much more in terms of foreign currency through exports. I believe that the food and agriculture sector will play a critical role in reaching the $400 billion target in 2028.”
The momentum in Turkiye’s exports maintained an upward trend in the last years despite multiple global challenges such as the recent pandemic and the outbreak of the war between Russia and Ukraine. Turkiye made exports worth over $254 billion in 2022, beating the previous record of nearly $225.4 billion in 2021.
Melisa Tokgöz Mutlu, TIM Agriculture Board chairperson, similarly emphasized that agricultural production and food gained strategic importance for the whole world and underlined that everything in the world began to be shaped around agriculture and food.
Noting that agriculture ranks first among the sectors with a current account surplus, Mutlu noted that in addition to the current agricultural production potential Turkiye obtains, they also carry the advantage of being able to work through customer-based and demand-oriented approaches.
“The geography we are situated in also offers us important opportunities. Starting from the European market, there is a large share of the population with a high purchasing power around us. There is no country in the region that has as large a capacity and advanced technology production infrastructure as we do,” Mutlu explained.
“We have experienced the advantages of our geographical location during crisis periods such as pandemics and wars. In order to further increase these advantages, we must observe how the demands are shaped in the world in the upcoming period and produce accordingly.We must be able to bring appropriate products to our country, process them, and sell them abroad within the scope of the inward processing procedure (IPP). Thus, we can contribute much more to closing the current account deficit in our country,” she noted.
Noting that sustainability criteria are important in the new period, Mutlu said: “We are forming our strategies based on this fact. Besides all these, we want to create a globally known and sought-after ‘Turkish brand’ in agricultural products and food. Because we aim to be the recognized supplier of markets with the highest purchasing power. If we can achieve this and exist with our brands in countries with high purchasing power, including Europe, the U.S. and Japan, we can create the highest added value for our country.”