Crisis damages Turkish free trade zones

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Crisis damages Turkish free trade zones
Oluşturulma Tarihi: Mayıs 04, 2009 00:00

ANKARA - Contractions are widespread in Turkey’s free trade zones, with trade volume greatly declining in the first quarter of the year. The zones’ trade volume totaled $3.7 billion in the first three months of the year, which was a 43.5 percent decline compared to the same period last year.

The Samsun Free Trade Zone showed the biggest contraction in trade with 99.5 percent, according to data gathered by the Foreign Trade Ministry. Among 80 free trade zones TÜBİTAK-MAM Technology was the only location where trade figures grew 116.8 percent. The zone had a trade volume of 36.6 million during the first three months of the year.

Istanbul Leather Free Trade Zone’s trade volume declined 49.5 percent during the first three months of the year, compared to the same period a year earlier. The zone implemented trades worth about $823.8 million. Aegean Free Trade Zone on the other hand experienced a deterioration of 40.4 percent during the period. The zone conducted trades worth $586.3 million during the first quarter of the year. Istanbul Atatürk Airport’s trade volume declined 33.8 percent to $621.6 million. Mersin Free Trade Zone recorded trades worth $437 million during the first quarter of the year. That was a decline of 38.7 percent compared to a year earlier. Istanbul Thrace Free Trade Zone was also not so lucky. The zone’s trade volume dropped 51.7 percent to $256 million. The trade volume at the European Free Trade Zone also declined 31.7 percent to $278.2 million.

Bursa Free Trade Zone implemented trades worth $242.6 million, which was a 46.9 percent decline compared to the same period last year.

Antalya Free Trade Zone experienced a major drop in its trade volume as it dropped 75.77 percent to $35.7 million. Kocaeli Free Trade Zone’s trade volume declined 25.02 percent to $128.4 million during the first quarter of the year.

The trade volume at the Kayseri Free Trade Zone deteriorated 44.8 percent to $96.8 million.

Menemen Leather Free Trade Zone experienced a trade volume decline of 46.13 percent. The zone posted a trade volume of $67.6 million in the first three months of the year. The trade volume of the Adana Yumurtalık Free Trade Zone dropped 28.9 percent to $43.4 million. Meanwhile, Gaziantep Free Trade Zone posted a trade volume worth $23.2 million for the first quarter of the year, which was a 12.7 percent decline compared to same period last year. Trabzon Free Trade Zone’s trade volume also dropped 42.8 percent to $8.78 billion, while Denizli Free Trade Zone’s trade volume declined 68.1 percent to $4.5 million. The trade volume at the Rize Free Trade Zone also dropped 63.4 percent to $914,000.

Contributing to employment opportunities
Meanwhile, free trade zones’ contribution to employment was 42,171 people for the first three months of the year. That figure was also lower compared to the number of people employed at the free zones during the same period last year.

Free trade zones provided employment for 46,613 people during the first quarter of last year.
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