Turkey has left worst behind as recovery begins with exports worth $10 billion in May, says the country's Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan.

Trucks and shipping containers are pictured at Haydarpasa port in Istanbul, Turkey, April 18, 2018.
Trucks and shipping containers are pictured at Haydarpasa port in Istanbul, Turkey, April 18, 2018. (Reuters)

Turkey's exports hit $10 billion this May in the shadow of the coronavirus pandemic, down 40.9 percent from the same month last year, according to preliminary Trade Ministry data released on Tuesday.

Commenting on the figures, Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan said Turkish exports in May rose 10.8 percent month-on-month while falling on an annual basis due to lower external demand, high-base effects in 2019, and bank holidays.

"Turkey left the worst behind with the May export figures, recovery begins," Pekcan said on Twitter.

The country's imports also narrowed by 27.7 percent to $13.4 billion in the same period, the data showed.

She stressed that intermediate and investment goods imports constituted 91.2 percent of the total, pointing to a rise in production and exports for the coming period.

Pekcan said that the export/import coverage ratio climbed to 74.3 percent, up from 66.3 percent in May 2019.

Turkey last month saw a nearly 34 percent annual decline in the foreign trade volume to $23.4 billion, according to the data.

May's foreign trade deficit was more than double the deficit in the same month last year, reaching $3.4 billion.

"Our exports on a working-day basis in May surged 28.5 percent compared to April, hitting $540.5 million," Pekcan added.

Exports to the EU, the country's main export market, soared 17.3 percent on a monthly basis in May, she noted.

Stating that the economy's main locomotive sectors saw a revival in exports compared to a month earlier, Pekcan said automotive exports jumped 95.5 percent, ready-wear exports rose 45.5 percent, and textile and defence exports climbed 35.5 percent and 33.9 percent, respectively.

Source: AA