According to data provided by the Confederation of Turkish Tradesmen and Craftsmen (TESK), 106,167 small business owners in Turkey closed shop in 2018, the Cumhuriyet newspaper reported on Wednesday.
The figure represented an increase of 10 percent over the previous year and put 2018 on record as the worst of the last four years, while the number of failed small businesses has surpassed half a million.
Increasing costs and the depreciation in the value of the Turkish lira have contributed to numerous bankruptcies declared by small businesses, while their loan burden increased by half over last year, according to the report.
According to Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK) figures, the total volume of non-performing small business loans went up from TL 25.2 billion ($ 4.77 billion) at 2017 yearend to TL 40.1 billion ($ 7.60 billion) in the first 11 months of 2018, an increase of 60 percent.
The report also noted that the increase in non-performing loans came in spite of a decline in the number of people using small business loans.