Duvar English 

Automotive production in Turkey careened by 91 pct in April, according to figures from the Automative Industry Association (OSD) released on Monday. 

While 103,350 automobiles were produced during the month of March, that figure sharply fell to just 11,164 in April, after the announcement of the first case of coronavirus was made on March 11. The pandemic in Turkey, which has resulted in the largest number of cases in any country outside of Europe and the US, has been devastating for the country’s automotive industry. 

Total production dropped by 28 pct. during the first four months of 2020 compared to the same period last year, according to the OSD figures, while the production of commercial vehicles fell by 36 pct. between January and April year-on-year. 

Turkey still lacks a relatively developed, strong industrial sector, with the rapid growth it experienced in recent years being largely due to construction and consumer spending. The country’s automotive industry, much of which is concentrated around the Marmara region, is one of its most important, and it manufactures vehicles for a number of foreign automakers. 

During the month of March, 83,771 vehicles were exported from Turkey, though that number shrank to just 9,327 last month. Export figures dropped 33 pct. during the first four months of this year in comparison to the same period in 2019.