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Why Turkey?


Ranking of Economies by GDP at PPP

The Turkish economy, from​ 2003 to 2018, has posted record growth and climbed from 18th place to 13th globally.

Turkish Economy (GDP at current prices, USD billion)

​Over the past 16 years, Turkey has put in a noteworthy performance by increasing the size of its overall economy from USD 236 billion in 2002 to USD 784 billion in 2018.

Employment Creation – 2008-2018

Turkey successfully generated approximately 7.5 million new jobs during the 2008-2018 period.

Exports of Goods in Turkey and the World

With an eye-catching 10 percent average annual growth in exports, Turkey has outpaced the world performance and increased its export volume from USD 36 billion to USD 168 billion over the past 16 years.


Income per capita (GDP per capita, current prices)

Turkey’s performance in economic development saw its income per capita increase from USD 3,581 in 2002 to USD 9,632 in 2018.

GDP per capita in Countries with Population over 50 Million – 2018

Turkey is the 11th largest economy in terms of GDP per capita among countries with population over 50 million.​


More than 23 urban centers, each with populations of over 1 million, support Turkey’s thriving domestic market through their production of goods and services. In terms of population, Istanbul is the largest city in Europe.​


Turkey is a natural bridge between both the East-West and the North-South axes, thus creating an efficient and cost-effective hub to major markets. ​

  • ​Close proximity to major markets

Turkey offers easy access to 1.5 billion people and a combined market worth of USD 24 trillion GDP in Europe, MENA, and Central Asia within a 4-hour flight radius.

  • Same day reachability of key markets

Turkey’s strategic location enables easy reach to markets across 16 different time zones, from Tokyo to New York.

  • Global connectivity

Turkish Airlines connects 255 destinations in 122 countries.

  • Hub for multinationals

Multinationals are increasingly choosing Turkey as a preferred hub for manufacturing, exports, as well as management.


The young and well-educated population of Turkey is a great asset as investors are facing considerable challenges elsewhere in Europe with ageing and shrinking populations.

Turkey offers excellent opportunities with its growing, young, and dynamic population – the driving force behind a strong labor pool and a lucrative domestic market.

Turkey’s population was registered as 82 million in 2018. It is expected to reach 86.9 million by 2023, and 100.3 million by 2040, according to the Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat). The population is projected to maintain its growth momentum until 2069, when it will peak at 107.6 million.

Turkey, with half of its population under the age of 32 in 2018, has the largest youth population among the EU member countries.


Turkey’s overall labor force is around 32.7 million people, which makes the country the 3rd largest labor force in Europe.

Turkey’s young population is an important contributor to labor force growth and has boosted the country’s rank over peer countries. Turkey has posted the largest labor force growth among the EU countries.

A rapid expansion in the number of universities has allowed Turkey to have more university graduates, enabling Turkey to transform its young population and large labor force into a skilled workforce.

  • ​More than 6.7 million students are enrolled in higher education currently
  • Over 800,000 university graduates annually
  • World-class engineering education


An increasing number of people from various parts of the world are moving to Turkey to start a new life, to work, or even to find peace of mind for their retirements. The country has developed dramatically in the last seventeen years, and the pace of progress in certain fields is nothing short of astonishing. ​

With its unique geographical location combined with a rich and diverse history, right in the cradle of many different civilizations, Turkey is a privileged place to live for expatriates and their families.

Many of Turkey’s new residents hail from several countries in Europe, the US and the Gulf. Thanks to the amendments in Turkey’s property law that lifted the reciprocity principle, foreign homebuyers and investors are now free to purchase nearly any property in Turkey. Moreover, foreigners who have acquired an immovable property worth a certain value with a title deed restricting sale for at least three years are eligible to acquire Turkish citizenship.

From flats in urban centers to villas in suburbs, there are a multitude of options to choose from when looking for housing in Turkey. Major metropolitan areas have the most modern and complete environment for an extravagant life in the city, where luxurious residence complexes offer all the daily amenities such as private security, kindergartens, sports complexes, social facilities, parking lots, and shopping malls for their residents.

Foreigners wishing to work or reside in Turkey are obliged to file an application to the relevant Turkish authorities with required documents in order to obtain a work or residence permit. The methods and principles concerning work permits to be issued to foreigners that will be employed in Turkey vary by the relevant sector, such as education, housekeeping services, health services, tourism, aviation, entertainment, and others, as well as with respect to foreign direct investments, special foreign direct investments, professional services, and liaison offices. Meanwhile, along with ownership status of real estate, residence permits and Turkish citizenship are issued to foreigners mainly based on making a minimum fixed capital investment, creating jobs, depositing a certain amount of money in banks operating in Turkey, buying government bonds, or on the intention to run a business or establish commercial connections in Turkey.

The transportation system in Turkey makes good use of the country’s highly developed infrastructure. With 56 airports across the country, one can fly from one city to another in Turkey in less than an hour in most instances. An extensive network of highways makes it very easy to drive from your home to any major city in Turkey. The high-speed train network, meanwhile, has been improving rapidly in the last decade; the 14 largest cities of Turkey are expected to be interconnected with high-speed train lines by 2023, the centennial of the foundation of the Republic of Turkey.

The education system of Turkey underwent serious reforms in the last decade. Most apparent are the now compulsory twelve-year education and the dramatic increase in the number of schools and other educational institutions. Moreover, international schools, where only pupils holding a foreign passport can attend, are present throughout the country. While schools providing education in European languages such as English, German, French, and Italian are available, there are other institutions where languages such as Russian, Japanese, and Chinese are taught as well.

The healthcare system in Turkey mainly operates with three different types of hospitals: public, university, and private. While social and health securities are governed in essence by the state, it is also possible to have private health insurance. The majority of hospitals in Turkey, both public and private, are either meeting or surpassing international standards in equipment quality and expertise.

The cultural activities in which one can engage in Turkey are only limited by individual interests and capabilities. Be it arts, hobbies, entertainment, or other leisure activities, the possibilities are endless. In all major cities one can find movies, plays, concerts, ballets, operas, and other varieties of cultural activities awaiting either participants or spectators. Local festivals and more traditional forms of leisure activities are also rising in popularity.

Turkey’s rich geography and suitable terrain make the country an ideal place for alternative sports such as mountaineering, golf, scuba diving, rafting, skiing, and yachting. Naturally, well-established and popular sports like football, basketball, and volleyball have a considerable number of players and supporters all over the country.

Located in the Eastern Mediterranean region and surrounded on three sides by temperate seas, Turkey has a climate allowing for extreme variations in weather, often in the same region or province. As such, it is possible to go skiing in a mountain resort after sunbathing on a sandy beach, both in the same day.​


  • The famous Trojan Wars took place in Western Turkey, around the site where the Trojan horse rests today.
  • The first church built by man (St. Peter’s Church) is in Antioch (Antakya), Turkey.
  • The oldest known human settlements are in Gobeklitepe (10th Millenium BC) and Catalhoyuk (7th Millenium BC), Turkey.
  • Ephesus and Halicarnasus are the two of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world), in Turkey.
  • Nicholas, also known as Santa Claus, was born in Patara and became the bishop of Demre, on Turkey’s Mediterranean Coast.
  • Noah’s Ark landed on Mount Ararat (Agri Dagi) in Eastern Turkey.
  • The last meal on Noah’s Ark, a pudding of sweet and sour taste (asure), is still served throughout Turkey.
  • Turks introduced coffee to Europe.
  • Turks gave the Dutch their famous tulips.
  • Istanbul is the only city in the world built on two continents.
  • Istanbul was chosen by the European Union as the European Capital of Culture in 2010.
  • There are three suspension bridges on the Bosphorus and two underwater tunnels, connecting the traffic between two continents.
  • Tradition in Turkey says that a stranger at one’s doorstep is considered “God’s guest” for at least three days.
  • Turkey is noted for having one of the three most famous and distinctive traditional cuisines in the world.
  • The First Ecumenical Council was held in Iznik, western Turkey.
  • Writing was first used by people in ancient Anatolia. The first clay tablets in the ruins of Assyrian Karum (Merchant Colony) date back to 1950 BC.
  • The oldest tin mine was found in Göltepe, 96 kilometers (60 miles) south of Tarsus.
  • The first Neolithic paintings found on man-made walls are in Catalhöyük, central Turkey.
  • Anatolia is the birthplace of historic legends, such as Homer (the poet), King Midas, Herodotus (the father of history), and St. Paul the Apostle.
  • Julius Caesar proclaimed his celebrated words, “Veni, Vidi, Vici” (I came, I saw, I conquered) in Turkey when he defeated the Pontus, a formidable kingdom in the Black Sea region.
  • Female goddesses like Cybele dominated the Central Anatolian pantheon for thousands of years before these supernatural powers were transformed to male gods.
  • The Hittites sold Abraham the cave where he buried his wife Sarah, when the Israelites came to Palestine.
  • The first church dedicated to Virgin Mary is in Ephesus.
  • Cherry was first introduced to Europe from Giresun, Northern Turkey.
  • Turkey has hundreds beaches and marinas which have the “Blue Flag” (a European award for the best clean water) on the Mediterranean and Aegean.
  • The first recorded international treaty in the world was the Treaty of Kadesh between the Hittite and Egyptian Empires, Hattusilis III and Ramses II, in c.1275 BC.
  • The oldest known shipwreck on Earth was found and excavated in Uluburun near Kas, in the Mediterranean region of Turkey.
  • In 640 BC, for the first time in history, coins made of electrum were used by the Lydian king Croesus in Sardis, in the Aegean region of Turkey.
  • King Midas with the “golden touch” lived in Gordion, capital of Phrigia.
  • Alexander the Great cut the Gordian knot near Ankara. The double knotting technique used in Turkish rugs is also called as Gordian Knot.
  • The Garden of Eden in the Book of Genesis was said to be watered by a river which separated into four streams as it left the garden; two of them the Tigris (Dicle) and Euphrates (Firat) rise from the mountains of Eastern Turkey.
  • Early Christians escaping from Roman persecutions found shelter in Cappadocia.
  • The Seven Churches of Apocalypse are all situated in the Aegean region of Anatolia; Ephesus, Smyrna (Izmir), Pergamum, Thyatira (Nazilli), Sardis, Philadelphia (Alasehir) and Laodicea.
  • Sultan Beyazit II dispatched the Ottoman Navy to bring the Jewish people who were expelled from Spain in 1492 and they were brought safely to the Ottoman lands.
  • Istanbul has the historical building of Sirkeci Train Station. This was the last stop of the Simplon-Orient Express – “king of trains and train of kings” – between Paris and Constantinople from 1883 to 1977. Agatha Christie was one of the passengers of this famous train.
  • The number of species of flowers in Turkey is approximately 9,000, of which 3,000 are endemic. In Europe for instance there are 11,500 species. This shows the richness of the fauna and the flora in Anatolia.
  • According to the figures of 2000, there are about 9,000 bird species (Aves) in the world, of which 453 are in Turkey.