Support Programs for Foreign Entrepreneurs in Turkey

In recent years, the value of entrepreneurship has increased and various institutions and organizations have been established in Turkey; Economic Development Foundation (İKV), Foundation for the Support of Women’s Work (KEDV), Small and Medium-sized Enterprises Development Organization (KOSGEB), Turkish Industrial Development Bank (TSKB)], Credit Guarantee Fund (KGF), Foundation for the Support of Vocational Training and Small Industry (MEKSA),  Technology Development Foundation of Turkey (TTGV), and so on.

Furthermore, entrepreneurs are able to break through on their own by making use of European Union Grants and Funds, such as Erasmus + Programme, Horizon 2020 Programme, EU Programme for Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (COSME), Creative Europe Programme, The Fiscalis 2020 Programme, The Customs 2020 Programme.

Some of TUBITAK programs that have been run to support diversified entrepreneurship attempts are as follows: 1512 Techno-Initiative Capital Support Program (BiGG), 1501 TUBITAK Industrial R&D Programs Support Program, 1503 Project Market Support Program, TUBITAK SME R&D Start-up Support Program, 1601 Innovation and Entrepreneurship Capacity Building Support Program, 1514 Venture Capital Support Program (GİSDEP).

Ministry of Economy of Republic of Turkey Investment Incentive Program

Turkish Ministry of Economy provides supports not only to Turkish citizens but also to everyone who likes to make an investment in Turkey. Natural persons, stock corporations, cooperatives, joint ventures, associations and foundations, and branches of foreign companies in Turkey are allowed to appeal for support provided within the Investment Incentive Program. According to Foreign Direct Investment Law, companies established in Turkey by natural and legal persons who are foreign citizens have the right to benefit from incentive provisions on equal footing.

Investment Incentive Program was established on the purpose of decreasing the dependency on the importation of intermediate goods at certain industries in Turkey in 2005. The main purposes of this program are to decrease the current deficit, to support investments in particularly underdeveloped regions, and to promote business clustering, to increase the number of investments providing technological development.

Incentive Program is divided into four as 1) General Investment; 2) Regional Investment; 3) Large-Scaled Investment; 4) Strategic Investment.

Table 1.

Support Elements General Investment Incentive Practices Regional Investment Incentive Practices Large-Scaled Investment Incentive Practices Strategic Investment Incentive Practices
VAT Exemption + + + +
Customs Duty Exemption + + + +
Tax Reduction + + +
Social Security Contributions Support (Employer’s Contribution) + + +
Income Tax Withholding Reduction* + + +
Social Security Contributions Support (Employee’s Contribution) + + +
Interest Rate Support** + +
Land Allocation + + +
VAT refund*** +

You may find the map of Incentive Program here.

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