Exporting guide to Turkey

Overview

Turkey is a large and fascinating market with plenty of export opportunities for UK exporters. It is home to both large multinationals and local businesses with a strong entrepreneurial culture. Despite Turkey’s recent political and economic challenges, the country’s prospects are positive and there is room for growth.

Strong commercial ties with the UK

Turkey and the UK have strong commercial ties. English is increasingly used for business, and Turkey has adopted European business ethics and modern management practices. Some of the UK’s biggest companies operate here including Vodafone, GlaxoSmithKline, BP, Marks & Spencer and HSBC. The country is also a popular holiday destination for British tourists.

Trade gateway

Turkey straddles both Europe and Asia and borders a range of countries. Its strategic location means it can act as a springboard for UK companies to do business in markets such as Central Asia and the South Caucasus. Businesses can get strong support from UK Export Finance.

Two women shopping within a city in Turkey

Turkey: at a glance

Economic growth

11.0%

Actual figure (IMF, 2021)
The UK is 7.4% (IMF, 2021, projected figure)

GDP per capita

$9,528

Actual figure (IMF, 2021)
The UK is $47,203 (IMF, 2021, projected figure)

Currency

Turkish lira

Business languages

Turkish

You may need a translator

Time zone

GMT +3

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Opportunities for exporters

Turkey and the UK have developed strong commercial ties, particularly in sectors such as energy, infrastructure, healthcare, technology, retail, defence and security, aerospace, and financial and business services. The Turkish government is investing significantly in a wide range of infrastructure projects, from nuclear power to road and rail.

Check for trade barriers

Trade barriers, such as tariffs or taxes, can raise costs, cause delays, or even stop you from exporting. Check for any issues that may impact your business when exporting.

See current trade barriers

See resolved trade barriers

Check duties and customs

Find information on how to export goods from the UK. View the duties, rules, restrictions, and the documents you need for your products.

See current duties and customs procedures

Doing business in Turkey

Preparing to export

VAT

VAT rates vary between 1%, 8% and 18%.

Some product groups are subject to Special Consumption Tax (SCT) at different tax rates. Stamp duty also applies to a wide range of documents including contracts, agreements and payrolls.

You’ll find more information on taxes on the Turkish government’s Invest in Turkey website.

Standards and regulations

The Turkish Standards Institution is responsible for developing all kinds of commercial standards.

There are a number of Turkish regulatory institutions that specialise in different areas. Contact our team in Turkey or our strategic partner, The British Chamber of Commerce in Turkey, for help.

Intellectual property (IP)

Intellectual property (IP) rights are territorial and rights granted in the UK do not provide protection elsewhere. You should consider getting IP protection abroad if you want to trade overseas or sell to overseas customers via the internet.

The Intellectual Property Office provides practical information to help you protect, manage and enforce your IP abroad. Further support for British businesses can be found through a network of IP attachés, based in key UK export markets.

Trade barriers

Check for any reported barriers to trading with Turkey.

Report any trade barriers that are affecting your business so we can help fix them.

Operating in Turkey

Risks

Regulatory issues, bureaucracy and sudden changes to legislation and regulations may present challenges to businesses exporting to Turkey.

Next steps

DIT can advise you on doing business abroad, and help put you in touch with other people who can help such as lawyers and distributors.