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SMEs and E-export in Turkey

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are the backbone of Turkish economy. More than 90% of all businesses in Turkey are SMEs and they account for more than 75% of employment around the country. SMEs also have a key role in international trade; more than half of Turkey’s total exports come from SMEs.


Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are the backbone of Turkish economy. More than 90% of all businesses in Turkey are SMEs and they account for more than 75% of employment around the country. SMEs also have a key role in international trade; more than half of Turkey’s total exports come from SMEs.

As e-commerce presents various opportunities for businesses, especially in terms of international trade, SMEs should not underestimate the necessity for digitalization. It can be understood as simple as having a proper and functioning website, or as complicated as transformation of entire business model and processes. Various business transactions can be done online; including e-export, selling goods or services to other countries via the internet.

The rates for SMEs’ engagement with digital business sphere in Turkey show that they fall behind compared to many other countries: they have a digitalization rate of 4% only and their potential, particularly in the field of exports, can be boosted via fitting digitalization strategies. Indeed, SMEs could play a key role in increasing e-export rates in Turkey, which account for 10% of the total Turkish e-commerce market [Read More].

In order to improve their capacities in internationalization, as well as digitalization, local SMEs should seek support mechanisms offered by various actors ranging from public / private organizations to educational institutions.  For example, last year the global e-commerce company Amazon, in cooperation with Bogazici University, has started a training program in Turkey, which aims at supporting Turkish SMEs in improving their export potential [Read More in Turkish]. 

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