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Turkey: Reforms Would Help Sustain Strong Growth

Trade Policy Review, Turkey: Acceleration of reforms would help sustain strong growth

Since its third Trade Policy Review (TPR) in 2003, Turkey has been implementing ambitious reforms that have resulted in high economic growth, rapid disinflation, and declining public and external debt burdens, according to a report on the trade policies and practices of Turkey published by the WTO Secretariat.

An important element in Turkey's performance is that its applied MFN tariff on non-agricultural goods are at relatively low rates.

The high level of tariff protection for agriculture, however, has limited the exposure of the sector to competition. The report states that an acceleration of Turkey's structural reforms, extension of the scope of tariff binding commitments, reduction of bound rates, and further tariff rationalization would help sustain its economic performance.

An additional favourable factor is that Turkey has moved to improve the investment climate. As a result, Turkey's annual Foreign Direct Investment inflows reached a peak estimated at around US$20,000 million in 2006.

Nevertheless, the report indicates that a number of sectors are still subject to FDI restrictions (e.g. broadcasting, fishing, petroleum, mining, and financial services). Turkey also continues to build on an extensive network of preferential trade agreements due to its customs union with the EC.

The WTO report, along with a policy statement by the Government of Turkey, will be the basis for the fourth TPR of Turkey by the Trade Policy Review Body of the WTO on 10 and 12 December 2007.


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