Turkiye’s Foreign Trade Deficit Decreased to $7.5 Billion in March

According to the Ministry of Commerce data, exports amounted to $22 billion 578 million in March. During this period, imports amounted to $30 billion 95 million. Foreign trade deficit decreased by 10% to $7 billion 517 million.

The Ministry of Commerce shared the details of foreign trade data in a written statement. Accordingly, exports in March amounted to $22 billion 578 million. Although exports decreased by 4.1% compared to March last year, it was recorded as the 3rd highest value in March historically.


The statement stated that the most important reason for the annual decline was the calendar effect and continued as follows:

“There were 5 Saturday-Sunday holidays in March 2024. There were 4 Saturday-Sunday holidays in March 2023. Exports and imports are carried out intensively on weekdays from Monday to Friday, and in very low amounts on Saturday-Sunday. On the other hand, in March 2023, the highest monthly figure in the 100-year history of our Republic was achieved with $23 billion 548 billion. This was due to the fact that some exports that could not be made in February 2023 due to the February 6 earthquake were able to be made in March 2023. The weak course of global economic activities in the Western world, which is our main market, especially in the European Union, which accounts for 40% of our exports, and the continuing decline in global trade and imports in the European Union are also very effective in March 2024 exports.”

In the statement, it was underlined that imports decreased by 5.7% compared to the same month of the previous year, reaching $30 billion 95 million, and it was reported that the monthly downward trend in imports has continued since last August.

It was stated in the statement that the foreign trade deficit decreased by 10.3% to $7.5 billion in March compared to the same month of the previous year, and that the ratio of exports to imports increased to 75%.


In the same month, intermediate goods exports ranked first with $11.3 billion. This was followed by consumer goods with $8.1 billion and investment (capital) goods with $3.1 billion. While Germany was the country with the most exports with $1.8 billion, this country was followed by Italy and the USA with $1.3 billion. The most exported sections were motor vehicles with $2.8 billion, boilers and machinery with $2.2 billion, and mineral fuels with $1.7 billion.

In March of this year, the number of countries exporting in TL was 166, and the number of companies exporting in TL was 37 thousand 929. Exports in TL increased by 47.7% compared to the same month last year.


It was stated in the statement that the positive trend in exports has continued since the second half of 2023, and that in the first quarter of this year, exports increased by 3.6% compared to the same period last year, reaching $63.7 billion.

In the statement, it was pointed out that imports decreased by 12.6% to $84.1 billion in the said period compared to the same period of the previous year, and the following was noted:

“In the first quarter of 2024, the foreign trade deficit decreased by 41.2% to $20.5 billion compared to the same period last year. Thus, the 12-month annualized foreign trade deficit, which increased to $122.2 billion in May 2023, decreased to $92 billion in March 2024 after 10 months. The export-import coverage ratio increased by 11.8 percentage points to 75.7%.”


The statement emphasized that the decline in the foreign trade deficit and the positive developments in service exports reduced the current account deficit and continued as follows:

“The annualized current account deficit, which was $60.1 billion in May 2023, decreased by $22.6 billion to $37.5 billion in January 2024. When February data is announced, the current account deficit in the last 12 months is expected to fall to around $32 billion. As a result of these developments in foreign trade for the first quarter of 2024, net exports are expected to contribute positively to economic growth. As of 2024, it is expected that the trend of increase in exports and decrease in imports will continue and therefore the decreasing foreign trade deficit will make a positive contribution to the decline in the current account deficit. As the Ministry of Commerce, we support our companies with policies that will increase domestic added value in production and exports, reduce dependence on imports, and ensure sustainable export growth with high added value.”

Source: NTV / Prepared by Irem Yildiz

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