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10 reasons to invest in Turkey

Turkey offers significant opportunities for foreign investors with with its unique geographical location combined with a rich and diverse history, right in the cradle of many different civilizations. The opportunities for the investors are not only in the dynamic domestic market, but also throughout the region.

Turkey is an attractive destination for investment. The country’s economy is predominantly driven by the exporting sector. Key exports from Turkey are hazelnut, ships, oil and chemical vessels, consumer electronics and home appliances, petrochemical products, textiles and processed foods.  Tourism is also a major income generator for Turkey with top tourism destinations.

Here are 10 reasons to invest in Turkey.

1. Successful economy
• Booming economy; more than tripling its GDP, reaching USD 800 billion in 2014, up from USD 231 billion in 2002 (TurkStat)
• Stable economic growth with an average annual real GDP growth rate of 4.7 percent between 2002 and 2014 (TurkStat)
• Promising economy with a bright future as it is expected to become one of the fastest growing economies among the OECD members during 2014-2016 with an average annual real GDP growth rate of 3.6 percent (OECD, February 2015)
• 16th largest economy in the world and 6th largest economy compared with the EU in 2013 (GDP at PPP, IMF WEO)
• Institutionalized economy fueled by USD 144 billion of FDI in the last decade (CBRT)
• A dynamic and mature private sector with USD 158 billion worth of exports and an increase of 250 percent between 2004 and 2014 (TurkStat)

2. Population
• A population of 77.7 million (2014, TurkStat)
• Largest youth population compared with the EU (Eurostat)
• Half the population under the age of 30.7 (2014, TurkStat)
• Young, dynamic, well-educated and multi-cultural population

3. Qualified and competitive workforce
• Over 29.2 million young, well-educated and motivated professionals (2014, TurkStat)
• Increasing labor productivity
• Approximately 610,000 students graduate annually from over 183 universities (2012, Student Selection and Placement Center-OSYM)
• More than 700,000 high school graduates with around half from vocational and technical high schools (2012, TurkStat)

4. Liberal and reforming investment climate
• The second biggest reformer among OECD countries in terms of its restrictions on FDI since 1997 (OECD FDI Regulatory Restrictiveness Index 1997-2012)
• Business-friendly environment with average of 6 days to set up a company, while the average in OECD members is more than 11 days (World Bank Doing Business Report 2014)
• Highly competitive investment conditions
• Strong industrial and service culture
• Equal treatment for all investors
• Around 41,397 companies with international capital in 2014 (Ministry of Economy)
• International arbitration
• Guarantee of transfers

5. Infrastructure
• New and highly developed technological infrastructure in transportation, telecommunications and energy
• Well-developed and low-cost sea transport facilities
• Railway transport advantage to Central and Eastern Europe
• Well-established transportation routes and direct delivery mechanism to most of the EU countries

6. Location
• A natural bridge between both East-West and North-South axes, thus creating an efficient and cost-effective outlet to major markets
• Easy access to 1.5 billion customers in Europe, Eurasia, the Middle East and North Africa
• Access to multiple markets worth USD 25 trillion of GDP

7. Energy corridor and terminal of Europe 
• An important energy terminal and corridor in Europe connecting the East and the West
• Located at a close proximity of more than 70 percent of the world’s proven primary energy reserves, while the largest energy consumer, which is Europe, is located right to the west of Turkey, thus making the country a linchpin in energy transit and an energy terminal in the region

8. Low taxes and incentives 
• Corporate Income Tax reduced from 33 percent to 20 percent
• Tax benefits and incentives in Technology Development Zones, Industrial Zones and Free Zones, including total or partial exemption from Corporate Income Tax, a grant on employer’s social security share, as well as land allocation
• R&D and Innovation Support Law
• Incentives for strategic investments, large-scale investments and regional investments

9. Customs union with the EU since 1996
• Customs Union with the EU since 1996 and Free Trade Agreements (FTA) with 20 countries (Ministry of Economy)
• More FTAs underway
• Accession negotiations with the EU

10. Large domestic market 
• 39.9 million broadband internet subscribers in 2014, up from 0.1 million in 2002 (ICTA, TurkStat)
• 71.9 million mobile phone subscribers in 2014, up from 23 million in 2002 (TurkStat)
• 57 million credit card users in 2014, up from 16 million in 2002 (The Interbank Card Center of Turkey)
• 166,5 million airline passengers in 2014, up from 33 million in 2002 (TurkStat)
• 35.9 million international tourist arrivals in 2014, up from 13 million in 2002 (TurkStat)