Turkey changes requirements for acquisition of citizenship by investment

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Changes made by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to a regulation on the requirements for the acquisition of Turkish citizenship by means of investment have been published in the Official Gazette, local media reported on Thursday.

According to the regulation, foreigners who have made fixed capital investments in Turkey in the amount of at least $500,000 or equivalent foreign currency, those who have provided employment for at least 50 people, those have deposited at least $500,000 or equivalent foreign currency in banks operating in Turkey and those who have purchased real estate for at least $250,000 will be eligible to be granted Turkish citizenship on condition of holding them for three years.

The regulation also says foreigners who have purchased government debt securities worth at least $500,000 or equivalent foreign currency, on the condition of keeping them for three years, and those have purchased real estate investment fund shares or venture capital investment fund shares of at least $500,000 or equivalent foreign currency, on the condition that they hold them for at least three years, can acquire Turkish citizenship.

The changes come after the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) on Dec. 20 unveiled an emergency plan to help the Turkish currency curb losses which stipulate that the country’s treasury will make up for losses incurred by holders of lira deposits should the lira’s declines against hard currencies exceed bank interest rates.

The Turkish lira lost 44 percent of its value against the dollar in 2021, with the losses accelerating toward the end of the year when Erdoğan orchestrated a series of sharp interest rate reductions.

The currency sank to a historic low of nearly 18.4 to the dollar before rebounding sharply two weeks ago after state-backed market interventions and after Erdoğan announced a scheme to protect lira deposits against currency volatility.

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