ISTANBUL, October 6 (Reuters) – Turkey’s current account is expected to have recorded a small deficit of $ 100 million in August, according to a Reuters poll on Wednesday, as tourism revenues rebounded.
Turkey’s import-dependent economy, worth $ 717 billion in 2020, has been subject to large trade deficits and a boom-bust cycle that was exacerbated by last year’s pandemic .
The current account recorded a deficit of $ 36.72 billion in 2020 mainly due to a sharp increase in the trade deficit and falling tourism income due to the fallout from the coronavirus.
The median estimate from a Reuters poll of 11 economists showed a deficit of $ 100 million in August, with estimates ranging between a surplus of $ 950 million and a deficit of $ 600 million.
The deficit was $ 4.26 billion in August 2020, when travel restrictions were in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic, causing the number of tourists arriving in Turkey to drop sharply.
A major component of the current account, the trade deficit narrowed 32.4 percent year-on-year in August to $ 4.26 billion, according to the Turkish Statistical Institute.
Almost 4 million foreign visitors arrived in Turkey in August, up 119% from last year but still less than two-thirds of the number in 2019, according to official data.
Rising tourism receipts and reducing the trade deficit are expected to reduce the deficit in 2021 as a whole compared to last year.
The 12 economists’ median estimate for the annual deficit was $ 19.75 billion, with a range of $ 12.5 billion to $ 24 billion.
Turkey’s 12-month current account ended 2019 in surplus for the first time since 2001, although the monthly reading fell towards the end of the year as the economy recovered from a crisis-induced recession monetary 2018.
The central bank is expected to release August current account data at 07:00 GMT on October 11.
(Reporting by Ali Kucukgocmen; editing by Dominic Evans)
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