Syrian startups launched by refugees on the rise in Turkey

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Syrian workers tide up clothes to display them in a shop, on May 1, 2018 in Gaziantep, southwestern Turkey. - In the Turkish city of Gaziantep, home to around half a million Syrians who fled the civil war south of the border, hundreds of Syrian businesses are thriving in a boost both for the displaced community and their host country. (Photo by OZAN KOSE / AFP)

The number of Syrian enterprises in Turkey is continuing to rise, fueling local economies, according to a newly released report, the Hürriyet Daily News reported.

In September a total of 163 Syrian-partnered companies were launched across Turkey, registering an 85 percent year-on-year increase and 10 percent on a monthly basis, a report by the Economic Policy Research Foundation of Turkey (TEPAV) indicates. This figure is equal to nearly 12 percent of all newly launched foreign enterprises, according to the report, which was based on Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges (TOBB) data.

In the southern province of Mersin, Syrians are now the largest foreign entrepreneur group, according to September data. The southern provinces of Kilis and Hatay followed Mersin in terms of Syrians accounting for the largest share of all foreign enterprises with 36.4 percent and 19.6 percent of the total, respectively.

Istanbul topped the list of cities hosting Syrian enterprises, with 98 companies, followed by Mersin and Hatay with 39 and 11, respectively.

In the first nine months of the year, Syrians launched 1,248 businesses in Turkey a 4.7 percent increase over the same period of 2017, with 203.5 million Turkish liras ($39 million) in capital, according to the report.

Nearly 7,000 enterprises have been established by Syrians in Turkey since the outbreak of a civil war in Syria in 2011, which has led Turkey to host nearly 4 million Syrian refugees. The companies employ nearly 100,000 people, the report also showed.

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