Turkish jewelry exports hit record levels of $7.2 billion last year, surpassing the previously set goal of $6 billion, the Jewelry Exporters Association said Friday.
The top five destinations for Turkish jewelry exports were the U.K., United Arab Emirates, the U.S., Hong Kong and Switzerland.
Out of the $7.2 billion exports, $3.1 billion consisted of gold exports, included in the inward processing regime.
The foreign sales of gold products and jewelry goods totaled $2 billion, leading the aggregate jewelry exports. The UAE, the U.S., Hong Kong, Libya and Israel were the top destinations for gold products and jewelry goods last year.
As for the other product categories, unprocessed and semi-processed gold exports were recorded at $1.7 billion while the exports of diamond-gold products stood at $151 million. The foreign sales of silver jewelry goods were estimated at $115 million.
The Jewelry Exporters Association members managed to strengthen their ties with the target markets, said Chairman Mustafa Kamar. "Throughout last year, we came together with jewelry buyers from Saudi Arabia, Hong Kong and Miami, traveling around the world. We believe that strong relations will serve better trade ties," Kamar said in a statement.
The record level of jewelry exports last year were facilitated by a hardworking foreign buyer delegation of the Jewelry Exporters Association and the Eighth Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Precious Stones and Jewelry Associations Conference, which was held in Istanbul last October.
To sustain the momentum in jewelry exports, Kamar said, exporters need to effectively use the inward processing regime. "Some of the components required for the manufacturing of export goods are imported. Therefore, we need the inward processing regime to benefit from customs duty on imported goods used in the production of export products," he added.
Different countries around the world send gold to Turkey for processing and import processed jewelry. That being the case, the Turkish jewelry manufacturers who import unprocessed goods and turn them into jewelry demand reimbursement of customs duties on these imports with the inward processing regime. If the system can be used with each country, exports will rise further, Kamar said.
Inward processing regime is a system that allows Turkish manufacturers and exporters to obtain raw materials and intermediate unfinished goods that are used in the production of the exported goods without paying customs duties or being subject to commercial policy measures. This system aims to maintain material prices at the international market level and improve the competitiveness of Turkish exporters.