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Apparel Sector Sets $19 bln Export Target in 2020

Turkey’s apparel sector, which sold goods worth $17.7 billion to foreign countries in 2019, seeks to increase its exports to $19 billion this year, the head of a sector association said on Feb. 17.

The sector’s share in the country’s overall exports of $14.8 billion in January 2020 was 10.1 percent, Mustafa Gültepe, the head of the Istanbul Apparel Exporters Association (İHKİB), told Anadolu Agency.

He said that the apparel sector had made a “flying start” by reaching an export figure of $1.5 billion in January, up by 5.8 percent in the same month last year.

Highlighting that the increase in exports was a success amid narrowing markets worldwide, he said: “Increasing our exports by 7.7 percent to the EU, our biggest market, raises our hopes.”

Gültepe said that of the country’s total apparel exports in January, 73.4 percent were to EU countries with Germany and Spain being the main destinations.

The apparel sector also exports goods valued around $700 million to the U.S. every year, which, he said, could reach $5 billion.

Turkey’s garment exports are projected to rise by 10 percent due to the coronavirus outbreak in China, which has delayed shipments from the mainland.

“However, if the crisis prolongs and global markets shrink, our exports could have a negative impact,” the association said.

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