What is the Turkish Citizenship by Investment Program?
To obtain Turkish Citizenship through Real Estate investment, one should purchase real estate in Turkey with a minimum total value of $400,000. You may choose to invest in one or multiple properties as long as the required investment floor is reached. Usually the entire process will take anywhere from 3-4 months. You may buy land, commercial, or residential property.
There are some additional fees the come along with the initial property purchase. The passport application fee for a family of four, averages around $6,000, including the due diligence fees. The tax considerations for the property purchase are as follows: Value Added Tax (VAT) equates to 1% for Residential and 18% for Commercial properties respectively; the Title Deed Tax equates to 4%. An important note on the Value Added Tax, is that if you are a non-resident of Turkey, there is a full exemption for the VAT. The total cost of the process, assuming the minimum $400,000 is invested, comes out around $270,000 - $300,000, depending on the category of property. When we say "for a family of four," the program does include stipulations for family members. The immediate members of the family, i.e. parents and children will all receive citizenship from the results of the program.
There are no particular designated areas or types of real estate exclusively eligible for the program. Foreigners are free to buy any type of real estate, anywhere in Turkey, as if they were citizens their whole lives, with the exception of certain military zones. This differs from some comparable programs in other countries who stipulate classification of asset and location as part of the qualification for eligibility and also sell those designated properties at inflated prices. In Turkey, not only are you free to buy all property that Turks are eligible to buy. But you will also be paying the same prices that Turks are being offered to buy those properties at.
Is Real Estate the only investment sector with a pathway to obtaining citizenship?
No. As a foreigner you may invest in other sectors and also obtain Turkish Citizenship. The are a handful of other pathways you may seek out, if you prefer to invest in those sectors. One other such pathway is through Fixed Capital Contribution, a minimum of $500,000 investment, would secure you citizenship. You may also commit at least $500,000, or the equivalent foreign currency, or Turkish Lira, into Turkish government bonds. Or you may invest that same amount of capital into a Real Estate Investment Fund, or Venture Capital Investment Fund shares. There are other pathways outside of Property Turkey's expertise. It is our opinion, that the most economical such program is the pathway via Real Estate Investment.
What documentation is required to apply for Turkey's Citizenship by Investment Program?
Here is a brief overview of the documents you will need to provide for application into the program:
- Original, and Photocopy, of Valid Passport
- Marital Status Certificate/Documentation
- Birth Certificates
- Biometric Photos
- Receipt of Payment (Foreign Exchange Receipt)
- Power of Attorney
Please find more information about the Turkish Citizenship by Investment Program.
What is a Foreign Exchange Receipt?
Per a recent amendment to the Citizenship law, your capital wire transfer must go through a process resulting in a Foreign Exchange Receipt. The process basically goes as such: Transfer in investment capital in the form of foreign currency; It then must be converted to Turkish Lira at the rate of the Turkish Central Bank; Once converted, a FER effectively freezes the USD value of the investment capital for the duration of the process. This contrasts to previous instances whence the exchange rate of the Lira would fluctuate and thus, in certain instances, drop the investment total under the program floor, rendering the application ineligible.
What are the benefits of obtaining Turkish citizenship, specifically compared to European counterparts?
There are many benefits to obtaining Turkish citizenship, especially through this program. The first is speed. You can very nearly become a Turkish citizen overnight. The process takes 3-4 months with no minimum prior residency required. A blistering pace within the scope of global equivalents. The second would be the cost advantage of the program. It is one of the most economically beneficial and straight forward program of its kind. Once you obtain citizenship, you immediately obtain the benefits of a world class national healthcare system, access to available pension and retirement plans, free state primary education and secondary reimbursement plans. The Turkish passport itself allows opens the door to visa-free travel to more than 110 countries worldwide, including future inclusion to the Eurozone and Schengen regions without a visa.
The real estate investment angle of this program can't be understated either. As a foreign national, you have the same access to inventory and price point as Turkish Nationals. This access combined with exchange purchasing power is a dynamite investment mix that will lead to success in the market if you make a sound purchase. Currently, the foreign buyer makes up less than 4% of total real estate transactions in Turkey. Of that 4%, only 16% have taken advantage of the Turkish CBI program. This equates to .6% of all real estate transactions were citizenship related. Basically, the idea is that this citizenship transaction is extremely advantageous to the foreign investor. After the time of three years, one could sell this property, keep the profits, and also keep Turkish Citizenship forever, all while returning to the comfort of their home country. It essentially amounts to free citizenship tacked onto open access to beneficial real estate in a global emerging market. There's nothing like these conditions anywhere else in the world.
Is military service obligatory for CBI recipients?
If above the age of 21, and the primary applicant for citizenship, then you are exempt for military service. If you have sons under the age of 18, they are required to participate in military service. However, there is an exemption to this requirement, via a contribution of around $5,000 in place of service. And in addition, this clause is currently under review for amending by the Turkish government. So in the near future they are actively looking to fully exempt foreign nationals from military service.
Can I buy property in stages, or make separate purchases over a period of time all contributing to raising my total investment over the floor?
Provided that the CBI program is still in existence in its current form at the time you raise above the floor and apply, then yes all of the purchases will be eligible.
Can dependents, parents and children over the age of 18, be included in my CBI application?
No dependents that fail to meet the citizenship requirements may not be included in you CBI application. However, once you obtain citizenship. You are able to obtain Turkish residency status for your dependent members. So they will still be able to enter the country and live with you on a permanent basis. There are exceptions to this for children over the age of 18. You may include them in your application, however there are other required checks, documentations, and stipulations for them additional to the normal process.
What is the age verification status for children turning the age of 18 during the application process?
Provided that the application is submitted before the child turns 18, they will be eligible for the normal citizenship procedures and obtain a Turkish passport.
What is the applicant cannot obtain marital status or birth certificates?
In our experience, in some countries, it has proven difficult to obtain such physical documentation for a variety of factors. In these cases, the Turkish government does accept an affidavit provided from the home country in place of those unattainable certificates.
What is the maximum number of people that can be eligible for Turkish citizenship under a single title deed?
A single title deed valuation will be split equally among owners in the eyes of the Turkish government, irrespective of the real percentages of ownership investment. Provided each stated owner accounts for over $400,000 of value upon equal division of the deed, all of the stated owners will be eligible for application.
Can I get citizenship for both of my wives?
Yes. Although, in Turkish law you may only have one legal spouse. With that being said, if you can show marital status from your country of origin, that will be respected by the terms of this program.
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