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PVS Shipping Line

Economic Overview

Turkmenistan is largely a desert country with intensive agriculture in irrigated oases and sizeable gas and oil resources. Its two largest crops are cotton, most of which is produced for export, and wheat, which is domestically consumed.

The majority of Turkmenistan’s economic statistics are state secrets. The present government established a State Agency for Statistics, but GDP numbers and other publicised figures are subject to wide margins of error; in particular the rate of GDP growth.

Although foreign investment is encouraged, and some improvements in macroeconomic policy have been made, investors still have to avoid a number of bureaucratic obstacles.

Composition of GDP

  • Services: 68.4%
  • Industry: 24.4%
  • Agriculture: 7.2%


Gas, crude oil, petrochemicals, textiles and cotton fibre.


Machinery and equipment, chemicals and foodstuffs.

Principal trading partners – exports

  • China: 69.6%
  • Italy: 4.7%

Principal trading partners – imports

  • China: 19.5%
  • Turkey: 17%
  • Russia: 12.6%
  • UAE: 6.8%
  • Ukraine: 6%
  • Germany: 4.7%
  • UK: 4.2%


Ports and terminals: N/a (Landlocked country) – Cargo can be routed via Baltic ports (Riga, Tallinn, Klaipeda), and Bandar Abbas

Exchange controls

All payments within Turkmenistan generally must be made in Turkmen manats, unless the entity making the payments is a contractor/subcontractor under the Petroleum Law.

  • The purchase, sale or exchange of foreign currency may be carried out only through authorised banks and currency exchanges. Currently, there is no mandatory requirement for non-governmental entities to convert income received in foreign currency into Turkmen manats.


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