Turkey has also joined the list of states offering foreigners to obtain citizenship in exchange for investments in the local economy in general and real estate in particular. The opportunity to acquire a Turkish passport existed before – since January 2017, but then the minimum investment threshold was 1 million US dollars. In September 2018, this amount decreased to 250 thousand, and, accordingly, the number of people wishing to buy real estate in Turkey has increased significantly – especially since interesting offers can be found for every taste and in almost all regions of the country.
In accordance with current legislation, in order to become a Turkish citizen and enjoy all the rights along with native residents, there are other options besides purchasing residential or commercial real estate:
purchase of land for development (area should not exceed 30 hectares);
investments in companies registered and located in the country in the amount of 500 thousand USD;
opening your own business (you need to create at least 50 jobs);
depositing 500 thousand USD into a deposit account in a Turkish bank (approval from the Turkish Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency will be required);
participation in one of the state investment funds in the amount of 500 thousand USD (approval by the Turkish Capital Market Council is required).
In all cases, the assets must remain owned for a minimum of three years, after which they can be sold or returned.
All applicants for Turkish citizenship are subject to a standard set of requirements, the main of which is the absence of a criminal record and financial transparency – that is, the legal origin of funds. After submitting an application, the standard form of which is presented on the website www.nvi.gov.tr, Turkish authorities gain access to personal information and verify all information provided – including the presence of deposits in foreign banks and securities, as well as real estate for abroad.
The package of mandatory documents includes translated into Turkish and notarized copies of a passport and registration certificate (residence permit), an extract from the registration of ownership of real estate indicating its value, a marriage certificate or any other document on marital status, a certificate of wealth health and a receipt for payment of the duty. As practice shows, the entire process from the moment of submitting a preliminary application to receiving a Turkish passport takes from three to six months, depending on how completely, accurately and correctly all the papers were completed. Due to the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic, this procedure has been significantly simplified, since all actions, including fingerprinting, are now carried out at Turkish consulates and diplomatic missions abroad (in 166 countries).
Together with the main applicant, his immediate relatives can apply for Turkish citizenship: legal spouse and minor children, for which they will need to submit their birth certificates. Moreover, if a child has a disability, then he is provided with a passport without any age restrictions.
Turkish citizenship, which is subsequently inherited, does not give the right to visa-free entry into the Schengen countries. However, when obtaining a Turkish passport, you will not need to give up any other one that you already have, and it serves as a good help for obtaining an E2 investor visa in the United States.
The popularity of the Turkish Citizenship by Investment program is evidenced by the fact that in June-July of this year, housing sales in Turkey at a price of 250 thousand USD and above more than doubled compared to December 2019. This was not prevented by quarantine, border closures, or other restrictive measures that were introduced by the authorities of many countries in the wake of the coronavirus panic. And, judging by the current dynamics, in the short and medium term the demand for Turkish real estate will only grow, which means that sooner or later there will be an increase in prices. And right now, when Turkey opens its borders to Russian citizens from August 1, the most favorable moment is coming to seriously think about and plan the purchase of real estate in Turkey.