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Free Zones in Turkey

Free Zones in Turkey


What are Free Zones?

Where are the Free Zones in Turkey?

Laws relating to Free Zones in Turkey

Investment Incentives for Turkey

Further Information



What are Free Zones in Turkey?


Free Zones are specially zoned areas within Turkey which are governed by a specific set of laws, effectively creating an area geared toward foreign investment, and free from Turkey’s normal customs regulations and taxation. 

They have been established by the government with the objective of increasing the countries export oriented investment and production, gaining foreign investment, finance, technology and trade possibilities.


In general all kind of activities can be performed in Turkish Free Zones such as manufacturing, storing, packing, general trading, banking and insurance. Investors are free to construct their own premises, while zones have also available office spaces, workshops, or warehouses on rental basis with attractive terms. All field of activities open to Turkish private sector are also open to joint-venture of foreign companies.



Where are the Free Zones in Turkey?


Adana Yumurtalik (1999)

Aegean (1990)

Antalya (1987)

Bursa (2001)

Denizli (2001)

Eastern Anatolia (1995)

Europa (1999)

Gaziantep (1999)

ISE Istanbul International Stock Exchange (1997)

Istanbul Atatürk Airport (1990)

Istanbul Thrace (ÇATALCA)(1998)

Istanbul-Leather (1995)

Izmir Menemen-Leather (1998)

Kayseri (1998)

Kocaeli (2001)

Mardin (1995)

Mersin (1987)

Rize (1998)

Samsun (1998)

Trabzon (1992)

TUBITAK-Marmara Research Center Technology (2002



Laws relating to Free Zones in Turkey

The legislation for foreign investment consists of a Law, a Framework Decree and a Communiqué as follows:

  • Law Concerning the Encouragement of Foreign Capital
    Law No : 6224 Date : 18 Jan 1954
    Date of Official Gazette : 24 Jan 1954
  • Foreign Capital Framework Decree
    Decree no : 95/6990 Date : 7 June 1995
    Date and no. of Official Gazette : 23 July 1995, 22352
  • Communique concerning the the decree on the framework for foreign investment (as amended by communique no : 3 published in the official gazette on 27 June 1996)
    Date of Official Gazette : 24 August 1995
  • Date of Official Gazette : 24 August 1995


These combined documents can be summarized as providing the following:


  • Those companies utilizing the Free Trade Zones are regarded as Turkish Companies in relation to the law.
  • Turkish and international companies may engage in all types of industrial, commercial, agricultural and other commercial activities.
  • Foreign capital may be brought into turkey in the form of cash, machinery and equipment, assets and intellectual property.
  • Minimum capital requirement of US$50,000 per person.
  • There is no limitation on participation ratios between local and foreign partners, indicating that a company can be 100% foreign owned.
  • The transfer of shares between the foreign shareholders are realized freely without any further authorization.
  • Real persons and legal entities residing abroad (including investment trusts and investment funds abroad) can freely purchase and sell all sorts of securities and other capital market instruments through banks and intermediary institutions.
  • Public and private sector enterprises shall apply to the GDFI for the registration of license, know-how, technical assistance, management and franchising agreements to be made with persons and legal entities residing abroad. These agreements shall become effective only after the registration by GDFI.
  • Capital increases may be made with application to Ministry of Industry and trade
  • After deduction of appropriate taxation, net amounts may be transferred out of Turkey freely


Investment Incentives - Invest in Turkey


The current legislation concerning the investment incentives is shaped by the decree published at 25th of March 1998, and its related communiqué published at 6th of May, 1998. According to this legislation, the incentive tools granted to investors are;

  • Exemption from customs duties and fund levies
  • Investment allowance
  • VAT (Value Added Tax) exemption for imported and locally purchased machinery and equipment
  • Exemption from taxes, duties and fees
  • as capital-in-kind



Free Zones Usage, 1980 to 2003




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