Turkey’s Top 10 Exports

Turkey’s Top 10 Exports

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Turkey shipped US$157.1 billion worth of goods around the globe in 2017, up by 3.5% since 2013 and up by a further 10.2% from 2016 to 2017.

From January to September 2018, exported goods from Turkey were valued at $123 billion. This 9-month metric puts Turkish exports on track for an annualized $164.1 billion estimated for all 2018.

Based on estimates from the Central Intelligence Agency’s World Factbook, Turkey’s exported goods plus services represent 24% of total Turkish economic output or Gross Domestic Product. The analysis below focuses on exported products only.

From a continental perspective, 53.3% of Turkish exports by value are delivered to European countries while 29.7% are sold to Asian importers. Turkey ships another 7.2% worth of goods to Africa and 6.5% to North American customers. A much smaller percentage of Turkish exports arrived in Latin America (excluding Mexico) and the Caribbean.

Given Turkey’s population of 80.8 million people, its total $157.1 billion in 2017 exports translates to roughly $1,900 for every resident in that country.

Turkey’s unemployment rate was 10.3% as of October 2017 up from 8.5% one year earlier, according to Trading Economics.

Turkey’s Top 10 Exports

Top 10

The following export product groups represent the highest dollar value in Turkish global shipments during 2017. Also shown is the percentage share each export category represents in terms of overall exports from Turkey.

At the more granular four-digit Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) level, Turkey’s number 1 export product are cars followed by gold, automotive parts and accessories, trucks, jewelry then T-shirts.

  1. Vehicles: US$23.9 billion (15.2% of total exports)
  2. Machinery including computers: $13.8 billion (8.8%)
  3. Gems, precious metals: $10.9 billion (6.9%)
  4. Knit or crochet clothing, accessories: $8.8 billion (5.6%)
  5. Iron, steel: $8.2 billion (5.2%)
  6. Electrical machinery, equipment: $8.1 billion (5.2%)
  7. Clothing, accessories (not knit or crochet): $6 billion (3.8%)
  8. Articles of iron or steel: $5.6 billion (3.6%)
  9. Plastics, plastic articles: $5.5 billion (3.5%)
  10. Mineral fuels including oil: $4.3 billion (2.8%)

Turkey’s top 10 exports accounted for three-fifths (60.6%) of the overall value of its global shipments.

Led by refined petroleum oils and petroleum gases, the mineral fuels including oil category was the fastest-growing among the top 10 export categories via its 34.7% increase from 2016 to 2017.

Close behind in second place was iron and steel with its 33.3% improvement.

Exported vehicles posted the third-fastest gain in value at 20.9%, followed by items made from iron or steel up 12.9%.

Only one top product category declined, gems and precious metals which dropped -10.7% year over year, thanks mainly to diminished international sales of gold, silver and diamonds.

Note that the results listed above are at the categorized two-digit Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) code level. For a more granular view of exported goods at the four-digit HTS code level, see the section Searchable List of Turkey’s Most Valuable Export Products further down below.


The following types of Turkish product shipments represent positive net exports or a trade balance surplus. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports.

In a nutshell, net exports represent the amount by which foreign spending on a home country’s goods or services exceeds or lags the home country’s spending on foreign goods or services.

  1. Knit or crochet clothing, accessories: US$8.1 billion (Up by 0.7% since 2016)
  2. Vehicles: $6.5 billion (Up by 232.3%)
  3. Clothing, accessories (not knit or crochet): $4.6 billion (Up by 8.9%)
  4. Fruits, nuts: $3.4 billion (Up by 1.1%)
  5. Articles of iron or steel: $2.6 billion (Up by 33.5%)
  6. Salt, sulphur, stone, cement: $2.2 billion (Up by 20.1%)
  7. Textile floor coverings: $2.1 billion (Up by 13.9%)
  8. Miscellaneous textiles, worn clothing: $1.8 billion (Up by 4.9%)
  9. Furniture, bedding, lighting, signs, prefab buildings: $1.8 billion (Up by 9.9%)
  10. Vegetable/fruit/nut preparations: $1.8 billion (Up by 2%)

Turkey has highly positive net exports in the international trade of apparel. In turn, these cashflows indicate Turkey’s strong competitive advantages under the knit or crochet clothing product categories.


Overall Turkey posted a -$76.7 billion deficit on all products for 2017 expanding 36.8% from the -$56.1 billion in red ink one year earlier in 2016.

As of June 2018, Turkey’s trade deficit stood at -$40.7 billion up 31.7% compared to the first 6 months of 2017.

Below are exports from Turkey that result in negative net exports or product trade balance deficits. These negative net exports reveal product categories where foreign spending on home country Turkey’s goods trail Turkish importer spending on foreign products.

  1. Mineral fuels including oil: -US$32.9 billion (Up by 37.2% since 2016)
  2. Machinery including computers: -$13.3 billion (Down by -10.9%)
  3. Electrical machinery, equipment: -$13.1 billion (Up by 6.1%)
  4. Iron, steel: -$8.5 billion (Up by 33.3%)
  5. Plastics, plastic articles: -$7.8 billion (Up by 18%)
  6. Gems, precious metals: -$6.6 billion (Down by -232%)
  7. Organic chemicals: -$4.7 billion (Up by 21.7%)
  8. Optical, technical, medical apparatus: -$4.2 billion (Up by 6.7%)
  9. Pharmaceuticals: -$3.6 billion (Up by 5.4%)
  10. Copper: -$1.9 billion (Up by 17.1%)

Turkey has highly negative net exports and therefore deep international trade deficits for mineral fuels including oil–particularly processed oils, coal and petroleum gases.

These cashflow deficiencies clearly indicate Turkey’s competitive disadvantages in the international fossil fuel market, but also represent key opportunities for Turkey to improve its position in the global economy through focused innovations.


Turkish Export Companies

Based on Forbes Global 2000 rankings, the following companies are examples of leading Turkish companies:

  • Koç Group (industrial conglomerate)
  • Sabanci Holding (automotive, banking)
  • Turkcell (mobile phones)
  • Enka (construction services)
  • Anadolu Efes (brewery, non-alcoholic drinks)

Global trade intelligence firm Zepol lists the following firms exporting from Turkey:

  • Anadolu Dokum San (cast iron/steel articles)
  • Cevikler Dis Ticaret (monumental/building stone)
  • Evimteks Dis Tic Ve Paz (woven fabrics, facial tissues)
  • MCE Cargo (steam condensers, plywood)
  • Ulus Metal San Ve Tic (chain sprockets, transmission components, auto parts)

Turkey’s capital city is Ankara.

Searchable List of Turkey’s Most Valuable Export Products

At the more granular four-digit HTS code level, Turkey’s top export products are cars followed by gold, trucks then jewelry.

The following searchable table displays 200 of the most in-demand goods shipped from Turkey during 2017. Shown beside each product label is its total export value then the percentage increase or decrease since 2016.

RankTurkish Export Product2017 Value (US$)Change
1Cars$11.8 billion+41.4%
2Gold (unwrought)$6.6 billion-19.9%
3Trucks$4.8 billion+5.3%
4Jewelry$4.13 billion+9.9%
5Automobile parts/accessories$4.11 billion+6.4%
6Processed petroleum oils$3.7 billion+31.6%
7T-shirts, vests (knit or crochet)$2.9 billion-1.8%
8Iron or non-alloy steel bars, rods$2.6 billion-2.9%
9Women's clothing (not knit or crochet)$2.5 billion+9.2%
10Insulated wire/cable$1.9 billion+8.9%
11Textile floor coverings, carpets$1.84 billion+13.6%
12Refrigerators, freezers$1.8 billion+3.6%
13Jerseys, pullovers (knit or crochet)$1.8 billion+10.7%
14Piston engine parts$1.7 billion+7.1%
15Public-transport vehicles$1.6 billion+7.8%
16TV receivers/monitors/projectors$1.5 billion+4.5%
17Men's suits, trousers (not knit or crochet)$1.4 billion-5.9%
18Hot-rolled iron or non-alloy steel products$1.4 billion+70.5%
19Miscellaneous furniture$1.3 billion+1.9%
20Miscellaneous nuts$1.3 billion-5.8%
21Linens$1.2 billion+0.7%
22Women's clothing (knit or crochet)$1.2 billion-4.2%
23Miscellaneous iron or steel tubes, pipes$1.2 billion+39.1%
24Rubber tires (new)$1.1 billion+15.9%
25Monument/building stone including marble$1.1 billion+28.4%
26Stockings, hosiery (knit or crochet)$1.1 billion+2.3%
27Wheat, meslin flour$1.1 billion-2.3%
28Miscellaneous iron and steel structures$1 billion+4.7%
29Washing machines$991.7 million+3.4%
30Plastic plates, sheets, film, tape, strips$976.2 million+5.8%
31Electric water heaters, hair dryers$943.2 million+10.9%
32Bread, biscuits, cakes, pastries$941.9 million+6.2%
33Monument/building stones, art$927 million+0.4%
34Plastic packing goods, lids, caps$889.8 million+10%
35Aircraft, spacecraft$879 million+1,109%
36Fresh or dried citrus fruit$853.2 million-4.5%
37Seats (excluding barber/dentist chairs)$850.3 million+8%
38Other than warp-knit fabrics$829.4 million+2.9%
39Synthetic yarn woven fabrics$817.1 million+0.6%
40Iron or non-alloy steel angles, shapes, sections$787.7 million+16.3%
41Miscellaneous iron or steel items$765.2 million+12.6%
42Tractors$762.6 million+16.1%
43Miscellaneous preserved fruits$761 million+2.1%
44Electrical converters/power units$728.4 million-16.4%
45Flat-rolled iron or non-alloy steel products (plated/coated)$711.8 million+130.5%
46Women's shirts (not knit or crochet)$698.2 million-3.2%
47Sanitary towels, baby napkins/liners$694.8 million+0.5%
48Cruise/cargo ships, barges$680.6 million+34%
49Aluminum bars/rods$675 million+17.1%
50Vulcanized rubber items$665.5 million+4.9%
51Coiled iron or non-alloy steel bars, rods$657.5 million+76.6%
52Aircraft parts$655.3 million+6.2%
53Medication mixes in dosage$648.7 million+10.3%
54 Dishwashing, clean/dry/fill machines $643.4 million+16.4%
55Synthetic filament yarn$605.2 million+8%
56Grapes (fresh or dried)$604 million+13.8%
57Men's shirts (not knit or crochet)$553.9 million-3.6%
58Unglazed ceramic flags, paving/wall tiles$551.6 million+602.5%
59Sun/safflower/cotton-seed oil$550.7 million-13.5%
60Hydraulic cements$531.4 million+7.8%
61Poultry meat$526.6 million+45.7%
62Aluminum plates, sheets, strips$525.8 million+6.7%
63Plastic tubes, pipes, fittings$522.8 million-5.4%
64Taps, valves, similar appliances$504.2 million+13.4%
65Pasta, couscous$490.9 million+16.3%
66Woven fabrics (85%+ cotton)$488.7 million+1%
67Wide knit or crochet fabrics$486.9 million+7.3%
68Base metal mountings, fittings$483.3 million+9.8%
69Cigars/cigarellos, cigarettes$479.9 million-3.2%
70Coated/laminated non-wovens$478.9 million+10.6%
71Copper wire$476.3 million+30.4%
72Paper containers, cellulose wadding$471.1 million+19%
73Women's blouses, shirts$464.8 million-9.1%
74Lower-voltage switches, fuses$463 million+3.6%
75Electrical/optical circuit boards, panels$461.8 million+9%
76Chocolate, other cocoa preparations$458.8 million+13.9%
77Yarn wash/clean/iron machines$458.4 million+17.6%
78Central heating boilers$458.2 million+18.5%
79Sugar confectionery (no cocoa)$456.7 million+10.7%
80Liquid pumps and elevators$444.1 million+21.7%
81Trailers$441.9 million+3.4%
82Whole fish (fresh)$438.8 million+8.5%
83Yarn (85%+ cotton)$430.9 million+12.9%
84Central heating radiators$426.6 million+16.4%
85Carbonates, percarbonates$422.5 million+32.5%
86Machinery parts$422.3 million+1.4%
87Miscellaneous plastic items$417.9 million+16.4%
88Vulcanized rubber tubes, pipes$417.6 million+21%
89Plastic plates, sheets, film, tape, strips$415.9 million+3.5%
90Plastic tableware, kitchenware, toiletry$398.8 million+12.1%
91Polyacetal/ether/carbonates$397.8 million+23.6%
92Uninsulated copper wire, cables$397.5 million+41.9%
93Zinc ores, concentrates$388.3 million+106%
94Centrifuges, filters and purifiers$377.3 million+6.2%
95Birds' eggs in shell$376.2 million+30%
96Air or vacuum pumps$374.1 million+16.9%
97Turbo-jets$369.8 million+4%
98Transmission shafts, gears, clutches$366.7 million+13.4%
99Iron and steel screws, bolts, nuts, washers$365.6 million+18.5%
100Soap, organics surface-active cleaners$357.8 million+3.5%
101Men's suits,trousers (knit or crochet)$356.2 million+2.8%
102Other organic cleaning preparations$350.9 million+0.2%
103Iron or non-alloy steel products (semi-finished)$349.9 million+292.9%
104Unmanufactured tobacco, tobacco waste$349.6 million-2.4%
105Other food preparations$348.3 million+2%
106Wood fiberboard$347 million+31.7%
107Iron and steel stoves, barbecues$346.3 million+13.4%
108Miscellaneous machinery$345.4 million+28.9%
109Chromium ores, concentrates$344.7 million+40.8%
110Household glassware$338.9 million-5.7%
111Packing sacks, bags$338.2 million+7%
112Yarn (synthetic staple fibers)$328.9 million+19.3%
113Footwear (leather)$327.1 million+22%
114Sort/screen/washing machinery$326.1 million+19.3%
115Aluminum foil (thin)$317.9 million+17.3%
116Household/sanitary rolls$314.3 million+18.7%
117Dates/figs/pineapples/mangoes/avocadoes/guavas$306.9 million+18.5%
118Piston engines$299.7 million+53.3%
119Dried shelled vegetables$298.8 million-12%
120Electric storage batteries$298.6 million+31.9%
121Apricots, cherries, peaches, nectarines, plums$297 million+20%
122Dried fruit$291.7 million-6.3%
123Tomatoes (fresh/chilled)$290.2 million+21%
124Machine-tool for metal$282.7 million+10.9%
125Miscellaneous aluminum items$282.5 million+12.5%
126Cold-rolled iron or non-alloy steel products$272.4 million+65.4%
127Fishing vessels, factory ships$270.9 million+129.5%
128Monofilament, rods, sticks, shapes$269.4 million+7.7%
129Cleaning/sorting/grading machines$265 million+24.8%
130Natural borates, concentrates$265 million+18.1%
131Tufted carpets/textile floor coverings$260.6 million+15.5%
132Moulding boxes/base$258.3 million+21.4%
133Jams, fruit jellies, marmalades, purees, pastes$257.4 million-8.3%
134Electrical lighting/signaling equpment, defrosters$256.6 million+15.3%
135Woven cotton fabrics$249.1 million-11.4%
136Iron ferroalloys$248.3 million+25.8%
137Men's shirts (knit or crochet)$246.3 million-3.5%
138Women's underwear, pajamas (knit or crochet)$241.7 million-12.1%
139Copper ores, concentrates$234.7 million+31.9%
140Iron and steel tables, household items$234.1 million+4%
141Vinegar-prepared vegetables, fruits, nuts$232.6 million+1.9%
142Lamps, lighting, illuminated signs$232.3 million-9.3%
143Ceramic sinks, washbasins$230.8 million+9%
144Woven fabrics (mostly synthetic staple fibers)$228.4 million+0.5%
145Plastic builders' items$218.7 million+0.7%
146Temperature-change machines$218.5 million+22.7%
147Flat-rolled stainless steel items$218.2 million+21.3%
148Bridge structures, parts$217.3 million+0.1%
149Fruit and vegetable juices$215.9 million+17.9%
150Yeasts, prepared baking powders$208.9 million+3.2%
151Acrylic polymers$208.1 million+12.2%
152Cellulose fiber paper$208 million-13%
153Air conditioners$206.7 million+6%
154Personal toilet/shaving preparations, deodorants$206.6 million+5.4%
155Engines (diesel)$205.4 million+8.2%
156Electric generating sets, converters$204.5 million-27.6%
157Electro-medical equip (e.g. xrays)$204.4 million+16.3%
158Fish fillets, pieces$202.9 million+5%
159Women's singlets,pyjamas (not knit or crochet)$201.5 million+2.7%
160Olive oil$200.4 million+187.9%
161Woven fabrics (mixed)$198.2 million-10%
162Miscellaneous cast iron or steel items$197.4 million+14.5%
163Safety glasses$197 million+9.1%
164Phone system devices including smartphones $196.2 million-12.5%
165Yarn (man-made staple fibers)$193.7 million+19.7%
166Warp knit fabrics$193.2 million-1.3%
167Footwear (rubber or plastic)$189.8 million+3.7%
168Iron or steel scrap$189.2 million+28.5%
169Other prepared/preserved vegetables (non-frozen)$182.1 million-2.3%
170Woven pile, chenille fabrics$181.9 million-1.3%
171Tomatoes (prepared/preserved)$181.6 million-5.8%
172Infant clothing (knit or crochet)$181.1 million+3.1%
173Feldspar, leucite, nepheline, flourspar$179.9 million+14.7%
174Woven fabrics (artificial staple fibers)$179.9 million+6.2%
175Lead ores, concentrates$177.8 million+50.8%
176Lifting/loading machinery$176.6 million+25.4%
177Chemical industry products/residuals$175.8 million-1.1%
178Beauty/makeup/skin care preparations$174.9 million+10.2%
179Iron or non-alloy steel wire$170.6 million+58.4%
180Rubber/plastic article making machines$169.3 million+15.9%
181Mattresses, quilts$168.5 million+26.9%
182Prefabricated buildings$168.3 million-0.2%
183Alloy steel bars, rods$165.4 million+28.4%
184Uncoated paper$164.9 million+46.5%
185Blood fractions (including antisera)$163.7 million-11.6%
186Non-alcoholic drinks (not water/juice/milk)$162.8 million+21.1%
187Glaze/graft putty, cement, filling$160.5 million+4.8%
188Prepared cereal foods$158.6 million-4%
189Hair preparations$155.8 million+7.9%
190Cheese, curd$153.6 million+2.4%
191Miscellaneous fresh/chilled vegetables$151 million+4.5%
192Margarine$149.3 million-21.2%
193Leather clothing, accessories$148.7 million-0.2%
194Electric motors, generators$146.5 million+17%
195Aluminum household items, sanitary ware$144.5 million+24.3%
196Wood carpentry, builders' joinery$143.7 million-3.4%
197Cases, handbags, wallets$143.5 million+9.7%
198Industrial preparation machinery$140.6 million+11.2%
199Miscellaneous furnishings$139.7 million+17.5%
200Footwear (textile)$139.3 million+0.3%

These 200 exported goods were worth a subtotal of US$132.4 billion or 84.3% by value for all products exported from Turkey during 2017.

See also Turkey’s Top 10 Exports, Turkey’s Top 10 Imports and Turkey’s Top Trading Partners

Research Sources:
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on August 31, 2018

The World Factbook, Country Profiles, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on August 31, 2018

Trade Map, International Trade Centre. Accessed on August 31, 2018

Investopedia, Net Exports Definition. Accessed on August 31, 2018

Wikipedia, List of Companies of Turkey. Accessed on August 31, 2018

Forbes 2015 Global 2000 rankings, The World’s Biggest Public Companies. Accessed on August 31, 2018

Zepol’s company summary highlights by country. Accessed on August 31, 2018