Turkey’s foreign trade deficit rose by 14.78% y/y in March to $6.24bn after falling 37% y/y in January and declining 10% y/y in February, preliminary data of the Ministry of Trade and Customs showed on April 2. The ministry started to release preliminary trade figures in January.
Exports plunged 13.45% y/y to $12.55bn while imports fell by 5.75% y/y to $18.8bn in March, said the ministry, adding that Turkey’s overall trade volume was down 9% y/y to $31.33bn in the month. Automotive exports fell by 14.3% y/y, precious metal exports (mostly gold) dropped 30.6% y/y, and steel &iron exports dropped 10.4% y/y in March. Turkey’s energy imports fell by 17.3% y/y to $3.76bn, reflecting the positive impact of lower oil prices.
In the first three months of the year, Turkey’s foreign trade deficit shrank 13.1% y/y, amounting to $15.2bn, according to the ministry. Exports reached $37.1bn, showing a 7.05% y/y decline in January-March, and imports fell by 8.99% y/y to $52.4bn, said the ministry.
The government projects a foreign trade deficit of $85bn for 2015 as it expects $173bn of exports and $258bn of imports this year.
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