The Customs Union between the European Union and Türkiye has been in force since 1996 (Decision 1/95 of the Association Council) and is based on the 1963 Ankara Association Agreement and its Additional Protocol of 1970. The Customs Union provides for free circulation of goods and a common external tariff, yet its scope is limited to industrial products, including processed agricultural products. The Customs Union also foresees that Türkiye aligns to EU law (the acquis communautaire) in the related areas, such as customs legislation, the removal of technical barriers to trade and the approximation of laws on protecting intellectual, industrial and commercial property and competition rules, including state aid.
Two separate trade agreements exist between the EU and Türkiye covering coal and steel products (established by 1996 Agreement between Türkiye and the then still existing ECSC) and agricultural products (deriving from Decision 1/98 of the Association Council).
EU-Türkiye trade in goods has reached a record level of EUR 198.1 billion in 2022. Türkiye is the EU’s fifth largest export destination (3.9%) and seventh largest import provider (3.3%). At the same time, the EU is the largest trade partner of Türkiye, accounting for 40.6% of Türkiye’s exports and 25.6% of its imports (2022 data). The EU also remains the largest source of foreign direct investment in Türkiye (58.4% between 2015 and 2020) even if its share has gradually declined over the past decade.
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