Turkey: An Investment Opportunity
Turkey has a unique geographic
location. It is strategically located having the Commonwealth of
Independent States bordering to her north and the northeast, Iran to
the east, and Iraq and Syria to the south. Its land on the European
continent borders with Bulgaria and Greece. Her proximity to these
countries provides her with excellent access to world markets.
In Turkey developments in foreign
capital investment occurred in the early fifties. During this
period, with the formation of rapid development strategies and
international economic cooperation, the Foreign Investment Law No.
6224 was enacted. Due to the structure of the economy at that time,
foreign investment entries were limited.
Since the 1980's the Turkish
government has followed liberalized, outward oriented, economic
policies. There were rapid changes in the economic and social
structure of Turkey. Deregulation of interest rates, establishment
of organized markets for money, foreign exchange, stocks and
securities, liberalization of capital movements, reforms in the
banking sector etc., were just some of the changes.
Following these measures,
protectionist economic policies were abandoned and a comprehensive
economic stabilization and liberalization programme was implemented.
The three major objectives of this new programme were:
i- minimizing state intervention,
ii- establishment of a free market economy;
iii- integration of the Turkish economy with the world economic
One of the major policy decisions was
the adoption of a liberal and flexible foreign investment policy. As
a result of the changes in the Foreign Investment Law, the
investment climate was made more efficient and suitable for
potential investors. The Turkish Lira became almost fully
convertible and the implementation of Foreign Investment Law No.
6224 guaranteed the transfer of capital gains, fees, royalties and
dividends (and in the case of liquidation), the transfer of paid up
capital, freely. In addition, Turkey provides a well-secured
environment for foreign capital by being a party to several
bilateral and multilateral agreements. In this context, investment
protection and double taxation agreements have been signed between
Turkey and with 16 and 20 countries, respectively.
Since the mid-1980's international
investors have been playing an increasingly prominent part in the
Turkish economy. As a result, Turkey has become a more attractive
country for foreign investors.
The infrastructure for industrial
operations has considerably improved, especially in the western part
of the country. Presently, seven Free Trade Zones are operational
and another five are under construction. There are also about 20
Organized Industrial Zones throughout the country which offer
attractive conditions for establishing industrial operations. Turkey
is conveniently connected to Europe by excellent air, sea and land