Yeni Safak – Turkey’s exports of automotive products reached new heights last month, according to figures released by the Uludag Automotive Industry Exporters Union (OIB). In March, auto plants in the country shipped motor vehicles and parts worth USD 2.1 billion to foreign markets, registering an increase of 14 percent over the same month of 2013. Last month’s export total in the sector is the highest recorded since September 2008.
A steady increase in exports to the EU is the major factor behind the record volume last month, according to OIB Chairman Murat Sabuncu who said that shipments to EU markets increased by 22 percent in March. “Strong growth in exports indicates that the year-end goal of USD 23 billion is achievable”, he noted. Having reached USD 5.5 billion with an increase of 8 percent over a year earlier, the Turkish auto industry’s first-quarter exports are also contributing to the increased annual target.
Last month, EU countries received 74 percent of Turkey’s total auto shipments from plants belonging to Ford, Fiat, Hyundai, Renault, Toyota, Honda and other carmakers. The country’s automotive production rose 5 percent in 2013 to 1.13 million vehicles.