Turkey Citizenship by Investment Program: General Guidelines & Rules
Turkey has an official program where Turkish citizenship is offered through investment. Thousands of people get Turkish citizenship with this program all around the world. This program has different rules, and a guideline to follow, which must be acknowledged by those who want to be a part of it.
The program typically takes around three to 6 months, and investors state that, in general, they get their passport in four months. Here in this article, I described the general guidelines and rules for getting Turkish citizenship.
- 1 Conditions for Obtaining Turkish Citizenship by Investment
- 2 Turkey Citizenship by Investment Process
- 3 Costs of Turkey Citizenship
- 4 Dual Citizenship
- 5 Tax Consequences of Turkey Citizenship
- 6 Benefits of Turkey Citizenship
- 7 Things to Avoid During Citizenship by Investment Program
- 8 Other Ways of Getting a Turkey Citizenship
Conditions for Obtaining Turkish Citizenship by Investment
The first thing to know about Turkey citizenship by investment is general conditions. Those conditions are pre-requirements for being a part of this program. If one or some of the conditions are not suitable for one, it may not be possible to obtain Turkey citizenship by investment.
The first condition is not having an illegal past in Turkey. In other words, if the investor entered or stayed in Turkey illegally earlier, it is not possible to get Turkish citizenship by investment. The following condition is to be at least 18 years old.
Not having any criminal record is a must. This is valid for every point of the world. Moreover, the property cannot be sold at least three years after investment. The costs and taxes must be paid during the citizenship process. Lastly, Armenia, Nigeria, Syria, North Korea, and Cuba citizens cannot be a part of this program.
Turkey Citizenship by Investment Process
If one can meet the conditions, they can be a part of Turkey citizenship by investment process. There are several ways of obtaining citizenship by investment in Turkey, which can be listed as follows:
- Purchasing real estate that worth at least 250,000 USD
- Deposit 500,000 to a Turkish bank account, governmental bonds, venture capital investment fund share, or real estate investment fund share (any other currency that is equal to 500,000 USD works, too)
- Start a business that would employ at least 50 people
- Make a fixed capital contribution of at least USD 500,000.
An important point to consider here is that if the applicant has a spouse, children under 18, or children who are dependent on the applicant (disabilities, etc.).
After the applicant chooses their investment method, the next step is to make a residence permit application, which should also include the family members involved. The process typically takes three to four months after this application; however, the duration may change.
Additionally, you will need a certificate that shows your eligibility if you are investing in real estate.
The next step is to collect the required documents from the government. The following are the required documents to get Turkey citizenship by investment:
- Turkish tax ID number: Turkish tax ID number is the first requirement since the system cannot go any further without a Turkish tax ID number. Moreover, opening a bank account in Turkey is not possible without it.
- 12 biometric photos (passport photos) of each applicant
- Residence proof (recent utility statement)
- Each applicant’s passport
- Marriage certificate, if applicable
- Each applicant’s birth certificates
- Divorce or death certificate of spouse, if applicable
- A clean police report from the country of residency
- Proof of health insurance valid in Turkey
- Proof of investment
- A notarized permit by local officials to applicant’s data’s process
The documents in the foreign languages must be translated to Turkish, apostilled, and notarized. After the whole documents are complete and sent to the relevant institutions, it is only left to wait. As mentioned earlier, the process typically lasts four to five months, but this duration may change.
Costs of Turkey Citizenship
In addition to the investments one makes, there are some fees and taxes that are needed to be paid. The costs of necessities during Turkey citizenship will be listed down below. One thing to note here is that those costs may change depending on different situations; the prices are written considering the averages.
- Visa fee: Approximately 100 USD per person
- Residence permit fee: Approximately 200 USD per person
- Insurance: Approximately 100 USD per person (only applies for adults)
- Application fee: 100 USD
- Land Registry fee: investment price’s two percent
- Property Value Report: Approximately 500 USD
- Official transfer fee (to Land Registry): 200 USD
In the citizenship through investment program, no investors are obligated to renounce their other citizenship, meaning that both citizenships can be preserved. The country also allows multiple citizenships, and there are no official restrictions about which nationalities are banned.
The dual citizenship option in citizenship through investment is considered a big advantage, especially for those who want to keep their other citizenship or those who will continue to work in their native country. Additionally, foreign citizens will be exempted from obligatory military service.
Tax Consequences of Turkey Citizenship
If one does not stay in Turkey for more than six months, they are not liable for paying taxes. Your income that is coming from abroad is not liable for taxes either. However, you need to pay taxes to your income in Turkey.
If you are planning to rent the house you bought in the real estate investment method, you will need to pay property tax in two installments annually. The tax rate for properties in metropolitan municipalities in Turkey is 0.2% each year. If one owns a property that is worth 1,500,000 TL, the tax is defined as 3000 TL per year. Also, while transferring the ownership, you must pay the accumulated tax for all prior years if you are selling a property.
Benefits of Turkey Citizenship
People who are considering getting Turkey citizenship through investment typically wonder about the benefits. Considering the high demand for the program, it is possible to name several significant benefits of Turkey citizenship through investment.
First, the program is considered straightforward. Insomuch that, people state the application process can be completed within 24 hours, and the only thing left is waiting afterward. If done correctly, the real estate investment program is pretty safe and profitable in the long run.
Additionally, Turkey citizenship allows global mobility since there are over 100 destinations in the world one can visit with a Turkish passport, no visa needed. Moreover, once one gets Turkey citizenship through investment, all of the offsprings of them will be a Turkey citizenship automatically.
Things to Avoid During Citizenship by Investment Program
In some cases, the simplicity of the program might cause some unfortunate events, like little traps by those who want to benefit from others. To avoid it, one must know all the details of the program. While it might not always be possible, it is a convenient option to work with a professional. Additionally, there are some common traps that one needs to avoid while obtaining Turkey citizenship by investment.
First, it is not recommended to believe a restricted timeline. There are companies and people who offer “three months guaranteed” Turkey citizenship. As mentioned earlier, the duration of the program may depend and can go up to 8 months. The people who are promising a strict timeline do not have authority over the procedure, and there is a chance that they will not be able to keep their promises.
Moreover, if you are going to work with a company, make sure that they are reliable. The investment process includes so many expenses, and working with an unreliable company might lead all of them to go to waste.
Lastly, it is important to do research regarding the housing prices in Turkey. Some firms and individuals trick foreigners into paying a lot higher to properties that are worth a lot less, especially the new-built buildings. Doing research about the prices in the surrounding areas and the average rent price in the neighborhood would help.
Other Ways of Getting a Turkey Citizenship
In addition to citizenship through an investment program, there are other ways of getting Turkey citizenship. The methods can be listed as follows:
- By birth: Offspring of those who have at least one Turkey citizen parent is a Turkey citizen.
- By marriage: After three years of marriage with a Turkey citizen individual, the spouse can become a Turkey citizen.
- By employment: If one works in Turkey (legally) under a contract for at least five years, they can become a Turkey citizen.
- Through nationalization: Those who have spent at least five years in Turkey can become a Turkey citizen. An important factor here is that the person cannot leave the country for a total of six months. In other words, in order to be a citizen, a person has the right to stay in another country for a maximum of 6 months in the five years they stay in Turkey. There is also some Turkish test is involved in this method.
- Special merit: This method is also as known as Turquoise Card. Only those who have a special talent can prove a strong and high-quality educational background, can offer highly qualified labor, contributed to scientific and technological developments, highly successful in cultural, artistic, or sportive activities.