Turkish economic activity gathers pace as production, retail sales grow

Turkey’s economic recovery appeared to gather momentum in the final months of 2019, with growth in industrial output and retail sales accelerating, according to official data published on Tuesday.

Industrial output increased by an annual 5.1 percent in November, expanding for a third-consecutive month. It was the biggest increase since July 2018, the month preceding a currency crisis that pummelled economic activity.  

Retail sales, adjusted for inflation, jumped by 8.5 percent in November, the biggest annual gain since January 2018. It was the third-straight month of growth.

Turkey’s government is seeking to stimulate economic activity with tax reductions and cheap loans from state-run banks as it seeks to meet an economic growth goal of 5 percent for 2020. The economy expanded by an annual 0.9 percent in July to September last year following three straight quarters of yearly contractions.

The increase in industrial output was led by an expansion in capital and intermediate goods, the data showed. Retail sales growth was spurred by mail order and internet sales.

On a month-on-month basis, industrial output grew by 0.7 percent. Retail sales also expanded by 1.7 percent compared with October.

Turkish Treasury and Finance Minister Berat Albayrak has said the government expects the economy to grow by about 5 percent in the final quarter of last year.