Turkish Citizenship by Investment

9 Şub 2022

The scheme introduced in 2017 initially required foreign buyers to make a US$1m threshold. This was later lowered to $250,000.

Under the scheme, foreigners can gain a Turkish passport by making a US$250,000 investment in property, or $500,000 fixed capital investment. This must be held for three years.

The scheme has led to a large spike in property sales, and about 40,000 people gaining citizenship.

In October, a new measure aimed at curbing sellers offering property to foreign buyers at inflated prices to reach the $250,000 minimum slowed home sales.

Now, buyers are obliged to use an independent appraiser to set the value of their home.

However, sales slowed only temporarily: when the lira slid further at the end of last year, foreign buyers moved to take advantage of the depressed currency, and property sales were up by 77% last year.

A "minor change" to Turkey's citizenship by investment programme means property buyers can no longer deposit funds straight into a seller's account.

The amendment, gazetted two weeks ago, means foreign buyers will now need to send their funds to a Turkish bank prior to purchase, converting their currency to lira for the purchase.

Foreigners who gain citizenship by moving funds to Turkey will also need to convert them to lira.

The bank, in turn, is required to exchange the currency via Turkey's Central Bank. For buyers, this means the days of direct transfers to a seller's account are over