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Imports and exports in Turkey

Updated on Friday 07th May 2021

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imports and exports in turkey.jpegTurkey and the EU have developed a strong economic relationship even if the country is not yet an EU member, but it signed a Customs Union agreement with the European Union in order to encourage trade and economic relationships. In recent years, the EU has ranked 1st at the top of Turkey’s imports and exports, while Turkey is the 7th in the EU top imports and 5th for exports. Entrepreneurs interested in starting a trading company in Turkey can discuss with our Turkish company formation specialists for assistance and guidance.

Turkey and EU trading

 
Turkey exported in EU many categories of goods, such as equipment for transport, textiles, agricultural products, cars, etc. and imported chemical products, machinery, and transport materials. The Customs Union agreement has encouraged the trade between the two entities because it stipulates free circulation of goods. The products having an ATR certificate and being delivered to Turkey have preferential treatment. The Customs Union refers to industrial goods and not agricultural products, except the processed agricultural ones, services, and public procurement. The trading sector is one of the largest contributors to the Turkish economy, therefore starting a trading business in this country is very appealing to foreign entrepreneurs.
 
Foreign investors interested in opening companies in the export import in Turkey can rely on the company formation services offered by our Turkish consultants
 

Customs regimes in Turkey

 
There are eight customs regimes in Turkey, according to the local legislation:
 
  • Release for Free Circulation.
  • Transit.
  • Customs Warehousing.
  • Inward Processing.
  • Processing Under Customs Control.
  • Temporary Admission.
  • Outward Processing.
  • Exportation.

If you open a company in Turkey and you want to import or export different goods you need a valid tax number. For exports, you also need to be a member of a union in this field of activity. Turkey has exported mainly in EU, Iraq, Russia, USA and the United Arab Emirates and imported also from EU, Russia, China, USA, and Iran.
 
Our company registration representatives in Turkey can offer more information on the customs regimes applicable here. The same is available if you need details about export import in Turkey.
 

The most imported and exported products in Turkey

 
Turkey is a world leader when it comes to imports and exports, the trading industry being one of the largest in this country. The most exported goods from Turkey are:
 
  • • cars, spare parts and automotive equipment considering a large number of foreign car manufacturers operating in the country.
  • • jewelry and precious stones, as Turkey is one of the most important gold producers in Europe and Asia.
  • • metals, among which scrap iron is the most representative in terms of exports to Europe.
  • • agricultural products – most of the locally-produced fruit and vegetables are exported to Europe.
  • • textile products and fabrics are also exported to the European Union but also to Asian countries.
 
Among the countries Turkey exports most of its products to, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom are the most representative in Europe. In the Middle East, Turkey exports most of its products in Iraq and the UAE. When it comes to imports, Turkey imports raw materials, gold, textile fabrics, spare vehicle parts, and refined petroleum. The most recent reports indicate Turkey imports most of the raw materials from China, Germany, Italy, Russia, and the USA.
 
Located at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, Turkey is one of the most important trading partners for countries on both continents which gives it a great advantage in both importing and exporting goods. Furthermore, some of the raw materials imported by Turkish companies are processed and then re-exported as finished goods.
 
Our company formation specialists in Turkey can help foreign investors who want to open manufacturing businesses in this country.
 

Documents required when importing goods into Turkey

 
Turkish companies and branches of foreign companies operating in this country can import goods under one of the customs regimes mentioned above. Depending on the products to enter the country, specific documentation must accompany them. Generally speaking, the following documents need to be presented to the Customs Offices when importing goods into Turkey:
 
  • • a customs entry document which is issued by the country from which the products are sent.
  • • the import license which needs to be obtained by the Turkish company importing the products.
  • • the insurance certificate which must accompany the products, and which is issued by the government.
  • • various certificates, among which the certificate of origin, the analysis certificate and the certificate of free sale.
  • • the purchase order or the letter of credit, or the consular invoice (where required).
 
The imported products must also be accompanied by a commercial invoice and a packaging list. When it comes to special products, such as fish, fresh fruit and vegetables, meat and other food products, these must be accompanied by health certificates, ingredient certificates, phytosanitary certificates, and other specific documents.
 
The list of documents which needs to accompany products imported by Turkish companies is quite extensive. Also, special licenses are required in certain cases, which is why we invite you to talk to our company registration agents in Turkey for information on the requirements related to setting up an import business in this country.
 

Documents required for exporting goods from Turkey

 
When it comes to exporting goods from Turkey to another country, the documents which need to be presented are similar to those required upon the import of products. Among these, the customs entry document, the commercial invoice, and packaging list together with a weight certificate must be presented.The company exporting the goods must also hold a valid export license which will be verified by the customs authorities in the country the products are sent to.
 

Importing and exporting goods in Turkish free zones

 
Turkey has several free zones which benefit from special import and export procedures. These procedures usually imply less documentation, but also certain incentives such as VAT exemptions. Warehousing and storage facilities are also available in Turkish free zones. With a deep knowledge of the legislation, our agents can help you open a company in Turkey in a free zone of your choosing.
 

Turkey, member of Euromed

 
The Euro-Mediterranean Partnership’s (Euromed) goal is to promote economic integration among the 16 countries near the Mediterranean Sea and Turkey is one of the members of this entity. These countries have signed free trade agreements in order to develop economic relationships among them. In Euromed, there are countries from Europe, Africa, and the Middle East and this partnership helped Turkey to extend its exports to the countries from Africa and Asia and grow its economy. The main products exported by Turks are clothes, cars, agricultural products, etc. In recent years, once the economic crises have affected most of the European countries, Turkey developed exports to African, Asian countries and states that are members of the Organization of Islamic Countries. If you would like to know more about Turkey imports, and Turkey exports, please get in touch with our agents.
 

How do I register an import-export company in Turkey?

 
International entrepreneurs who want to start an import and export company in Turkey will have to align with the business requirements and legislation imposed. In most cases, the limited liability company or the LTD is the proper option for such activities because the registration procedures are the structure are simple. While private LTDs in Turkey are preferred for small and medium operations, the public ones address large activities and related companies. One of the main differences between these two types of structures is the minimum share capital, TRY 50,000 is needed for a private one, and TRY 100,000 for a public LLC. Here is extra information about limited liability companies necessary for establishing a trading company in Turkey:
 
  • At least one shareholder can set up an LTD in Turkey, but no more than 50.
  • The minimum share capital needs to be deposited in a Turkish bank account.
  • The Articles of Association represent the main company documents with information about the owners, activities, business address, regulations, and more.
  • An individual can represent the Turkish LTD with a power of attorney. One of our company formation agents can act on behalf of the newly-formed business in Turkey.
  • Some import and export activities require special licenses and permits at the time of registration.
  • The Turkish Trade Register verifies the documents and makes the necessary approvals.
 
The incorporation of a Turkish LTD enters the attention of our specialists, so it is quite simple to get in touch with us and let us handle the formalities of registration and more. In the case of import and export activities, assistance for special licenses and permits, registration with relevant trading authorities is needed. More about Turkey imports, and Turkey exports can be discussed with our agents.
 

EU-Turkey trading for 2020

 
In terms of EU imports of goods from Turkey in 2020, Germany registered around EUR 12,633 million, followed by Italy with EUR 7,456 million, and France with EUR 6,667 million. Also, Germany ranked 1st for EU exports of goods to Turkey, registering around EUR 21,798 million, followed by Italy with nearly EUR 7,700 million and France with more than EUR 6,300 million. Moreover, Turkey registered excellent trading collaborations with countries like the Netherlands, Spain, Belgium, Hungary, Poland, Sweden, Denmark, Ireland, Croatia, and many more.
 

New FTA agreements signed by Turkey in 2021

 
Turkey already has 21 FTAs (free trade agreements) with countries worldwide. The most recent FTA was signed by Turkey in 2021 with the UK, the ones with Sudan, Qatar, Lebanon, Japan, Indonesia, Ukraine, and Thailand being renegotiated or ready to enter into force. We remind that a free trade agreement is an important treaty based on specific policies to sustain the trading activities between countries, with simplified formalities and fewer bureaucracies. In other words, the verification of imports and exports in Turkey is made fast, simple, and efficient, without any restrictions. More about the FTAs, Turkey imports, and Turkey exports can be discussed with our team of company formation specialists.
 

Making investments in Turkey

 
Turkey is one of the most popular and sought after business destinations in Europe and Asia and already hosts a large number of successful international companies. In terms of business conditions in Turkey, the authorities have focused on simplifying them in recent years, managing to attract a large number of foreign investors each year. Experienced workforce, business opportunities in most sectors and industries, the ease with which a company can be incorporated, but also excellent infrastructure are just some of the attributes of the Turkish business environment. Here are some interesting data and statistics on the economy and business direction in Turkey:
 
  • In matters of total FDIs, Turkey registered around USD 165 billion in 2019.
  • Most of the foreign direct investments in Turkey were absorbed by the finance and insurance sector in 2019, followed by the wholesale and retail trade.
  • There are more than 60 branches and representative offices registered in Turkey, according to the latest statistics.
  • The 2020 Doing Business report issued by the World Bank ranked Turkey 33rd out of 190 worldwide economies.
  • The greenfield investment sector in Turkey worth around USD 4 billion in 2019.
  • Besides the financial and insurance sector in Turkey, energy, manufacturing, and agriculture absorb a large number of FDIs on a yearly basis.
 
 
If you are interested in opening a company in Turkey and develop a business in exports/imports field, you may call our Turkish company formation agents.
 

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