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Turkish textiles stepping ahead to grip stronger position in global market

Multinational corporations were already looking for Chinese sourcing alternatives for the movement that intensified in March this year due to political divisions between China and the EU, and more recently Xinjiang’s forced labor-related production. In later times, European companies prefer near-shoring as one of the ways to diversify supply chains and make them more flexible and efficient.

Figure: Turkey’s textile sector has become a significant sourcing point for clothing supply chains around the world due to its potential. Courtesy: Collected

Thus, Turkey’s textile sector has become a significant sourcing point for clothing supply chains around the world due to its potential. Turkey has the largest share of EU’s imports averaging 7.0 percent among these product categories: clothing and accessories, and make-up articles (mostly home textiles).

Similarly, in the case of clothing accessories, Turkey has an 8.6 percent share, followed by Italy at 9 percent and China at 29.9 percent.

Turkey’s production, logistics, value-added products, and a big push for sustainability in the textile and apparel industry make it a potential sourcing point after China. Turkey’s major competitions are Vietnam, Bangladesh, Egypt. Among them Turkey has the shortest lead time than other competitors because of its support and proximity of location.

Turkey Vietnam Bangladesh Egypt
Logistics Performance Index Rank 47 39 100 67
Trading across borders rank 44 104 176 171
Lead time to export (Days) 2 3 4 2
Time to Export: Border Compliance (hours) 10 55 168 48
Time to Export: Documentary Compliance (hours) 4 50 147 88

Even, export costs for border compliance and documentary compliance are lower than Turkey’s major competitors due to the economic growth of Turkey. Turkey’s economic growth over the past two decades has been remarkable. Turkey’s per capita GDP in 2000 was USD 3,143, which increased its per capita GDP to USD 12,614 by 2013. After 2012-13, economic growth has slowed down drastically.

Consumer price inflation in Turkey fell from 54.4 percent in 2001 to 6.5 percent in 2011, but it has finally risen since 2015 to a record 15.1 percent in 2019.

Turkey Vietnam Bangladesh Egypt
Cost of Export: Border compliance (USD) 338 290 408 258
Cost of Export: Documentary compliance (USD) 55 139 225 100
Cost of import: Border compliance (USD) 46 373 900 554
Cost of import: Documentary compliance (USD) 55 183 370 1000

Turkey’s textile and apparel industry has been instrumental to its economic growth and development over the years. At its peak in 2002, textile and clothing contributed 26.6 percent to total manufacturing value-added in Turkey. Today, Turkey’s textile sector represents more than 18% of its export earnings, making a great contribution to its export earnings.

In April 2021, Turkey’s total garment exports increased from 573 million to USD 1.6 billion last year. Turkey’s total garment exports increased by USD 6.3 billion in January 2021, up from USD 4.8 billion last year with an increase of 32.3 percent.


Turkey has the distinct advantage of providing a significant portion of its textile and garment industry domestically. It is more prominent in the cotton industry. Turkey produces more than 62.0 percent of its cotton consumption needs, while its large cotton spinning industry processes cotton and supplies about 85 percent of its domestic cotton yarn cost.

On the fabric front, Turkey exports twice as much cotton as it imports to the rest of the world. Turkey’s main reliance on raw material imports lies in synthetic fibers and yarns, most of which are supplied by China and India. But raw materials are a small part of what Turkey lags. High labor costs and future economic instability can reduce the growth of Turkey’s textile and apparel sector.

These are some of the factors that could create or break Turkey’s textile and apparel in the future.

If anyone has any feedback or input regarding the published news, please contact: info@textiletoday.com.bd

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