The formation of the Ankara Agreement between the EU and Turkey established a process towards the creation of a Customs Union that’ll help Turkey secure benefits with the European Economic Community (EEC) and vice versa.
Not only did this lead to a substantial increase in both imports and exports within Turkey but with the additional help of separate bilateral agreements signed with the EU, which also includes some individual rights. It was observed that non-tariff trade of goods could then easily take place between Turkey and the member states of the European Union.
Now, this wasn’t completely a free-trade practice and although a common external tariff on all goods was levied initially The goods other than agricultural products, steel and coal products are largely free from being imposed any outlandish tariffs as the trade of those particular three kinds of goods are covered under different preferential agreements.
The Presence of Turkey's Customs Union
The presence of Turkey in the Customs Union has boosted the country’s GDP per capita as well as helped them turn their economy into an industrial type from the previous agrarian type. It is also evident to witness that Turkey stood strong during the great global recession through its fiscal discipline and uninterrupted industrial activities which kept exports and imports at a steady.
The economy has been progressing succeeding and has seen an impressive growth rate of 4.5% in the first quarter of the year 2020 which is significantly more than what was seen from the rest of the EU members.
However, Turkey has been made to adjust its tariffs and duties with those of the EU members, thereby allowing the Free Trade Agreement(FTA) partners of the EU to export to Turkey tariff-free while still maintaining tariffs on the export of Turkish goods.
Negotiations and Assessments Between The EU and Turkey
Additionally, Turkey did raise the prospect of leaving the customs union during the negotiation of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) which endangered the American goods to enter Turkey tariff-free whereas still being liable to American tariffs. Thus, negotiations and assessments have taken place regarding the Customs Union between the EU and Turkey to be amended to include them in the present and future FTAs of the EU.
These reasons state that Turkey has both the grounds and means to develop its foreign trade potential while also becoming home to several international companies that seek to reposition their production to Eastern Europe. The FTA with the Mediterranean partners and healthy trade relations with the Middle East easily sets Turkey to experience growth in various sectors such as Tourism, Telecommunications, and many more.