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, according to head of Istanbul Apparel Exporters Association (IHKIB) Mustafa Gultepe, who recently said the sector’s share in the country’s overall exports of $14.8 billion in January 2020 was 10.1 per cent.

The apparel sector had made a ‘flying start’ by reaching an export figure of $1.5 billion in January, up by 5.8 per cent over the figures in the same month last year, Gultepe told Anadolu Agency.

Highlighting that the increase in exports was a success amid narrowing markets worldwide, he said raising exports by 7.7 per cent to the European Union (EU), Turkey’s biggest market, and raises hopes.

Gultepe said out of the country’s total apparel exports in January, 73.4 per cent was to EU countries, with Germany and Spain being the main destinations.

The apparel sector also exports goods valued around $700 million to the United States every year, which, he said, could reach $5 billion. Turkey’s garment exports are projected to rise by 10 per cent 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.