Turkey’s Top 10 Imports

Istanbul, Turkey

Istanbul, Turkey

Turkey imported US$223 billion worth of goods from around the globe in 2018, down by -7.9% since 2014 and down by -4.6% from 2017 to 2018.

Turkish imports represent 1.3% of total global imports which totaled an estimated $17.788 trillion one year earlier as calculated on January 21, 2019.

From a continental perspective, about half of Turkey’s total imports by value in 2014 were purchased from other European countries. Asian trade partners supplied almost a third of import sales to Turkey while another 6.7% worth of goods originated from North America. Smaller percentage shares came from Latin America (3.6%) excluding Mexico but including the Caribbean, Africa (3.1%) and Oceania (0.5%) led by Australia.

Turkey’s Top 10 Imports

Top 10

The following product groups represent the highest dollar value in Turkey’s import purchases during 2018. Also shown is the percentage share each product category represents in terms of overall imports into Turkey.

At the more detailed four-digit Harmonized Tariff System code level, Turkey’s costliest imported goods are refined petroleum oils, gold, iron or steel scrap, automobile parts or accessories, cars, coal and mobile phones.

  1. Mineral fuels including oil: US$43 billion (19.3% of total imports)
  2. Machinery including computers: $25.8 billion (11.6%)
  3. Iron, steel: $18.4 billion (8.3%)
  4. Electrical machinery, equipment: $16.6 billion (7.4%)
  5. Vehicles: $13.9 billion (6.2%)
  6. Plastics, plastic articles: $12.9 billion (5.8%)
  7. Gems, precious metals: $12.6 billion (5.6%)
  8. Organic chemicals: $6 billion (2.7%)
  9. Optical, technical, medical apparatus: $4.7 billion (2.1%)
  10. Pharmaceuticals: $4.4 billion (2%)

Turkey’s top 10 imports accounted for well over two-thirds (70.9%) of the overall value of its product purchases from other countries.

Three of these top categories expanded in cost from 2017 to 2018 namely mineral fuels including oil (up 15.6%), organic chemicals (up 10.9%) then iron and steel (up 9.8%).

Turkish imports of electrical machinery and equipment led the decliners via a -21.7% setback year over year.

Please note that the results listed above are at the 2-digit Harmonized Tariff System code level. Information presented under other virtual folder tabs is at the more granular 4-digit level.

Fuel

In 2018, Turkish importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of fossil fuel-related products.

  1. Processed petroleum oils: US$12.7 billion (up 29.2% from 2017)
  2. Coal, solid fuels made from coal: $4.4 billion (up 12.2%)
  3. Petroleum gases: $1.9 billion (up 16.3%)
  4. Petroleum oil residues: $640.6 million (up 38.1%)
  5. Coke, semi-coke: $255.7 million (down -45.4%)
  6. Coal tar oils (high temperature distillation): $79.1 million (up 45.6%)
  7. Electrical energy: $57 million (down -33.3%)
  8. Petroleum jelly, mineral waxes: $44.2 million (up 11.2%)
  9. Peat: $13 million (down -23%)
  10. Asphalt/petroleum bitumen mixes: $3.7 million (up 18%)

Among these import subcategories, Turkish purchases of high-temperature distilled coal tar oils (up 45.6%), petroleum oil residues (up 38.1%) and processed petroleum oils (up 29.2%) grew at the fastest pace from 2017 to 2018.

These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of fossil fuel-related imports among Turkish businesses and consumers.

Machinery

In 2018, Turkish importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of machines including computers.

  1. Engines (diesel): US$2.4 billion (down -1.3% from 2017)
  2. Computers, optical readers: $1.7 billion (down -16.7%)
  3. Turbo-jets: $1.6 billion (up 12.7%)
  4. Piston engines: $1.2 billion (up 2.4%)
  5. Centrifuges, filters and purifiers: $1.2 billion (up 1.5%)
  6. Air or vacuum pumps: $1.1 billion (down -5.2%)
  7. Taps, valves, similar appliances: $1 billion (down -12.9%)
  8. Piston engine parts: $974.6 million (down -5.7%)
  9. Liquid pumps and elevators: $907 million (down -7%)
  10. Miscellaneous machinery: $886.7 million (down -18.6%)

Among these import subcategories, Turkish purchases of turbo-jets (up 12.7%), piston engines (up 2.4%) and centrifuges, filters and purifiers (up 1.5%) increased from 2017 to 2018.

These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of machinery-related imports among Turkish businesses and consumers.

Iron/steel

In 2018, Turkish importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of iron and steel.

  1. Iron or steel scrap: US$7.1 billion (up 16.3% from 2017)
  2. Iron or non-alloy steel products (semi-finished): $2.5 billion (up 23.1%)
  3. Hot-rolled iron or non-alloy steel products: $2.3 billion (down -1.9%)
  4. Flat-rolled other alloy steel products: $1.3 billion (up 5.9%)
  5. Flat-rolled stainless steel items: $1 billion (down -0.4%)
  6. Iron ferroalloys: $686.6 million (up 0.9%)
  7. Flat-rolled iron or non-alloy steel products (plated/coated): $656 million (down -11.2%)
  8. Cold-rolled iron or non-alloy steel products: $525.5 million (down -2.7%)
  9. Pig iron: $508.9 million (up 40.9%)
  10. Alloy steel bars, rods: $267.8 million (up 41.9%)

Among these import subcategories, Turkish purchases of alloy steel bars and rods (up 41.9%), pig iron (up 40.9%) and semi-finished iron or non-alloy steel products (up 23.1%) grew at the fastest pace from 2017 to 2018.

These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of gems and precious metals-related imports among Turkish businesses and consumers.

Electronics

In 2018, Turkish importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of electrical equipment.

  1. Phone system devices including smartphones: US$3.2 billion (down -24.5% from 2017)
  2. Lower-voltage switches, fuses: $1.1 billion (down -4.1%)
  3. TV/radio/radar device parts: $1.1 billion (down -20.3%)
  4. Electrical/optical circuit boards, panels: $995.7 million (up 5.4%)
  5. Insulated wire/cable: $916.7 million (up 0.6%)
  6. Electrical converters/power units: $850.7 million (down -16.5%)
  7. Electric motors, generators: $786.8 million (up 2.5%)
  8. Solar power diodes/semi-conductors: $702.9 million (down -81.5%)
  9. Electric generating sets, converters: $600.3 million (down -5.2%)
  10. TV receivers/monitors/projectors: $580.4 million (down -21.2%)

Among these import subcategories, Turkish purchases of electrical and optical circuit boards or panels (up 5.4%), electric motors and generators (up 2.5%) and insulated wires or cables (up 0.6%) increased from 2017 to 2018.

These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of electrical equipment-related imports among Turkish businesses and consumers.



 
See also Top Asian Export Countries, Turkey’s Top 10 Exports and Turkey’s Top Trading Partners

Research Sources:
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on February 6, 2019

The World Factbook, Country Profiles, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on February 6, 2019

Trade Map, International Trade Centre, www.intracen.org/marketanalysis. Accessed on February 6, 2019