Turkey enjoys a very special location at the crossroads between East and West, overlapping Europe and Asia, so it offers both domestic and export-oriented market opportunities. The growing domestic market is becoming increasingly sophisticated. A strong local manufacturing industry (including leading wool operations) is targeting both this and the high-income European markets with incremental demand available from emerging Russia, Caucasia and Central Asia markets (approx. 250 million people); and diverse and expanding Middle East and North Africa markets (approx. 160 million). Potential luxury market size is 19 million consumers.

Turkey has a customs union with the EU and is in the accession process to be a full member. It also has Free Trade Agreements with EFTA and 14 other countries, and 9 more are being negotiated. Turkey is also a member of Black Sea Economic Cooperation, Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO), Organisation for Islamic Conference and Islamic Development Bank. All of these aspects explain what we see as an emerging role for Turkey as a competitive source to China and India for manufactured products into Europe.

Market Size

  • The luxury market in Turkey is estimated at around US$11.1 billion (all categories) with the organised luxury menswear market worth an estimated US$7.4 billion.
  • General exports increased by 16.9% and reached US$13.2 billion while imports decreased by 5.4% down to US$20.4 billion from June 2010 to June 2011. Turkey’s biggest export partners in March 2012 were Germany (US$1.3 billion), Iraq (US$918 million), UK (US$672 million), Italy (US$630 million), and Russia (US$615 million).


Purchase trends show:

  • Domestic market continues to be in-store vs online
  • Switching consumer preferences moving to branded apparel
  • Organised retailing slowly replacing traditional markets.

Opportunity for Wool

The major opportunity represented by Turkey is key account based and in the concept of increased manufacturing access into Europe (west and east) as an alternative to sourced volume from China and India.