Includes information on average tariff rates and types that U.S. firms should be aware of when exporting to the market.
Last Published: 7/24/2018
Turkey has been a WTO member since 1995 and a GATT member since 1951.  The EU and Turkey have been linked by a Customs Union agreement since 1995.  Turkey has been a candidate country to join the EU since 1999, and is a member of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership.

Turkey applies the Customs Union Common External Tariff (CET) to industrial goods, and its Most-Favored Nation (MFN) tariffs for non-agricultural products are low, on average 5%. However, this relative openness is not reflected in Turkey's WTO commitments as it has left 66% of its non-agricultural tariff lines unbound.  Tariff protection is high for agricultural products.   The Customs Union with the EU and free-trade agreements provide duty-free access for many of Turkey's most important trading partners.  In addition, Turkey has the possibility to open tariff-rate quotas for non-agricultural goods, its investment encouragement programs provide for duty and tax concessions on imports, exporters benefit from an inward-processing scheme, and a "suspension list" enables manufacturers to import certain raw materials and intermediary inputs at low or duty-exempt rates.
On June 21, 2018, Turkey implemented $266.5 million in tariffs against a range of U.S. goods imports in retaliation for U.S. steel and aluminum tariffs.  These increased tariffs range from 4-70% in addition to the MFN tariffs.  Trade remedies continue to be an important policy tool for Turkey, as it is one of the WTO's main users of safeguard and antidumping measures.  

Customs surcharges include a value-added tax (VAT) levied on most imported, as well as domestic, goods and services.  The importer is responsible for paying the VAT.  The VAT is calculated on a Cost Insurance Freight (CIF) basis plus duty rate and any other applicable charges levied before the goods clear customs.  The VAT for most agricultural products (basic food) ranges from 1% to 8% and can reach up to 18% for some processed products.  Capital goods, some raw materials, imports by government agencies and state-owned enterprises, and products for investments with incentive certificates are exempt from import fees.

Turkey relies on internal taxes on goods and services to raise government revenue, rather than trade taxes such as customs duties.  Turkey's VAT and the Special Consumption Tax (SCT) make no distinction between imported and domestically produced goods, in principle.  However, the SCT on alcoholic beverages varies considerably depending on the type of product.  The tax system has the potential to favor the consumption of some products relative to others.  Other products impacted by the SCT include petroleum products, motor vehicles, aircraft, vessels, and durable consumer goods.  VAT is imposed at the general rate of 18%, but reduced rates (8% and 1%) are applied on some goods and services, and certain types of transactions are tax exempt.  Together, VAT and SCT provide over half of the government’s revenue.

Both imports and exports are subject to a number of border measures in Turkey, including outright prohibitions, licensing, controls, and restrictions.  Eleven categories of goods are subject to import license and 26 require export license.  On the export side, Turkey adheres to international agreements for the prohibition or control of strategic goods and has provisions for export quality control checks of certain agricultural products.

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Turkey Tariff Rate Quotas Import Duties