December 2018. 14 years ago. When we turn and look back it seems so distant in the past. Those times when a dollar was worth 1.5 Tl. In the 2008 figures of the Turkish natural stone sector, the USA has the lead with an income of $307,65 million. China, which was growing step by step, had the second place with a total export of $296,43 million. 2008 was the end of a period. Becoming the biggest buyer of Turkey in 2009, China takes the lead from the USA and continues the same until 2022. We observe that Turkey’s total export income from China is almost $1 billion, but also that it almost stopped during the pandemic. But China always had the lead until 2022. 2022 marks the end of a period and the champion changes.
Let’s start with the figures for the January-May 2022 period. Concluding 2021 with an increase of 20.54% in 2021, the Turkish natural stone sector has increased its income by 3.38% despite the 5.32% decrease in the total amount of products exported in the first 5 months of 2022. Exporting 373.877 tons of natural stone, Turkey earned $147,70 million. The decrease in the amount of exported products can be explained by the increased processed marble sale instead of blocks over the last 3 years. In other words, higher prices for products become more important than heavier stones.
Let’s get back to the leader. We had concluded 2021 with a growth rate of 42.2% in the United States market. Our natural stone export to the world giant maintained its positive momentum in the first 5 months of 2022. Exporting a total of 438.019 tons of natural stone, Turkey earned $212,1 million from the USA. The total amount of products sold increased by 8% compared to the first 5 months of 2021 and the increase in total income was recorded as 21.1%. So, both our income and income per ton in the US market have increased.
And China… The figures from the end of 2021 indicated a total growth of 13.9% in the Chinese market. But during our visits and conversations in the sector, we had observed that there was a considerable recession in the Chinese market and this situation would affect 2022 as well. Unfortunately, we were right. China started with a sharp decrease in 2022. Our total income from China in the first 5 months of the year decreased by 38.6% and the decrease in the amount of products we sold was 39.8%. In exchange for 800.322 tons of block marble exported to China, Turkey earned $162 million. Compared to the same period of the last year, the income loss was recorded as $103 million.
India, which is the second most important market after China for the block market, has had positive statistics. In this critical stop, where we increased our income by 55% in 2021, our total income in the first 5 months of 2022 was 48.5%. In the January-May 2022 period, the Turkish natural stone industry sold 266.434 tons of block marble to India and earned $40,82 million. This indicates an increase of $13 million compared to the same period of the last year. Concluding 2021 with an income of $95.4 million, Turkey is getting closer to the $100 million barrier.
And the changing balances. Processed products are beginning to have more share in the Turkish natural stone sector. In the January – May 2022 period, our processed marble export increased by 27.78% compared to the same period of the last year. The increase in product sales was recorded as 18.47%. Exporting 919.928 tons of processed marble, Turkey earned $388,7 million. Despite the 4.56% decrease in the amount of products sold in the travertine market, the income increased by 4.8% In exchange for 373.877 tons of travertine export, the total income was recorded as $147,70 million.
As processed products become more popular, the block sale keeps receding. The first 5 months of 2022 were quite problematic for the block market. Compared to the January – May period of 2021, Turkey’s total income decreased by 26% and the amount of products decreased by 20.6%. In exchange for 1.352.954 tons of block marble export, Turkey earned $235,7 million. We observe increasing exports in Egypt, Italy, and Vietnam.
Lastly, let’s analyze some interesting markets. Israel keeps getting bigger. Ranking as the 6th country to which Turkey exported the most in 2021, Israel went up to the 4th rank in the first 5 months of 2022. Israel grew by 19%, Germany by 53%, the UAE by 78.4%, Australia by 22.1%, and Italy by 61.9%, which are good news for Turkey. It was interesting that our income from Russia, which is at war, increased by 136%.