As new year's resolutions go, Turkey's is significant: to improve its relations with Germany. A series of diplomatic upsets has seen the number of German tourists travelling to Turkey fall. However, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu is aiming to change this and mend the rift between the two countries. The minister will meet his German counterpart soon to find a way to build bridges and restore traditionally strong ties.
Turkish property & economy news
Turkish tourist numbers grew by 30 percent this year, earning the country praise from the World Tourism Organisation.This growth in tourism helped the country to net $26 billion.
Turkey's export figures are creeping up after a tumultuous two years. Exports have topped $142 billion this year, surpassing the entire 2016 total. Turkey is finding new markets and strengthening existing ties to boost its trading with regional partners. Automotive exports are especially strong, and November saw record-breaking figures in this industry.
In a bid to improve cultural and economic ties, Turkey's ploughing millions into its railway infrastructure. As part of its development, construction has begun on a high-speed railway line linking Istanbul and Bulgaria. The project, which is fully backed by the EU, will facilitate the movement of people across Turkey and wider Europe and Asia.
A record-long highway tunnel in Turkey’s northeast has opened, 137 years after the project was first mooted in the Ottoman era. It’s the latest in a long line of ambitious infrastructure projects mooted by President Erdogan. The tunnel through Ovit Mountain, connecting the Black Sea province of Rize with the eastern province of Erzurum, opened on November 22.
2016 was a bad year for real estate sales, which goes some way to explaining September's 75 percent jump in sales to foreigners. However, Turkey's economic and political situation remains stable, and government incentives to increase property sales are bearing fruit, says Property Turkey director Cameron Deggin.
An European Union report predicts Turkey's growth will reach 5.3 percent this year, a correction of more than two percentage points since May. Boosted by economic reforms, Turkey's economy has returned to form this year. Meanwhile, Eurozone growth is predicted to be around 2.2 percent this year.
Turkey’s strategic position and strong economic fundamentals mean it’s increasingly becoming the investment destination of choice. Qatar and Turkey already have a solid trading relationship, with $834m in bilateral trade in each year, and now Qatar is set to invest $20 billion in 2018, turning Turkey into its fifth largest investment destination.
A rise in the number of residential property sales in Turkey last month puts the country on track to beat last year's 1.3 million property figure. A raft of new measures by the Turkish government appears to have worked, and investors from the Middle East and Europe are returning to Turkey, particularly Istanbul.
The flow of foreign direct investment coming into Turkey has remained strong through the last fifteen years. Weathering political storms and economic upsets, it's grown steadily each year. However, a Turkish investment expert says Turkey can do better, and explains why he thinks Turkey's potential remains barely tapped.
The US and Turkey have suspended visas for the citizens of each other's countries, following a diplomatic spat in which a US consulate worker was arrested. The countries are NATO allies and major trading partners are waiting to come to an agreement. Erdogan has called the move "upsetting".
A wide-reaching economic plan to transform Turkey's fortunes over the next two years was unveiled last week. Deputy PM Mehmet Simsek announced several targets, including lowering inflation, raising living standards, fostering growth and raising taxes. The measures will have impact on property prices as investors take advantage of favourable growth rates.