Turkey says its eyeing more foreign investment for the recovery of its economy from the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic, declaring new measures to maximise credibility for foreign investors and entrepreneurs.
Turkey, which relies heavily on foreign investment, received nearly 8 billion U.S. dollars in foreign direct investment (FDI) in 2020 during the COVID-19 crisis, according to Turkey’s Investment Office.
This figure indicates that FDI to Turkey decreased by 16.5 per cent year-on-year to 7.7 billion dollars in 2020, data compiled by Turkey’s Central Bank showed.
To lure foreign investors back to the country, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has recently unveiled a new economic plan, which includes less bureaucratic formalities and more legal protection, as well as financial incentives.
The Istanbul-based International Investors Association Secretary-General Serkan Valandova welcomed the measures, saying that they will provide a solid legal basis for foreign portfolios.
“The plan is key in giving new momentum to foreign investment amidst the pandemic, and will build trust among the existing and potential investors and increase the predictability of the investment environment,” he told Xinhua.
“We believe that the rapid and decisive implementation of these objectives will strengthen our country’s positive image for international investments and significantly contribute to its global competitiveness,’’ Valandova said.
But he also cautioned that in 2021, the global appetite for international investments is expected to be again on the downside and that competition would be fierce.
“Investments canceled and delayed due to the uncertainties brought by the pandemic caused a 42 per cent decrease in the global volume of international direct investments. Forecasts indicate that this decline will continue in 2021,’’ the expert added.
There were also fears that the turbulence in Turkish financial markets caused by the sudden sacking of the central bank’s chief by Erdogan on March 20 may harm FDI.
The lira lost about 15 per cent of its value in ten days against the U.S. dollar, increasing financial woes for Turkey, which was one of the few countries to avoid an economic contraction in 2020 in spite of the global health crisis.
Turkey received 164.6 billion dollars of FDI in the last 18 years, according to official figures. Europe, meanwhile, became the top investor with 120.1 billion dollars of investment in the country.
“We are explaining to foreign investors that Turkey was offering many incentives and opportunities in various fields, such as telecommunications and natural resources,’’ a source close to the government told Xinhua.
“Other key sectors are the agri-food, textile and automotive industry and also health, which are in high demand especially amid the COVID-19 pandemic,’’ this source, who is an expert on foreign investments, said on condition of anonymity.
Meanwhile, China and Turkey have extended their cooperation during the global health crisis as the Ankara government chose the China-made Sinovac vaccine for its mass-inoculation drive launched in January.
Chinese investments in Turkey have also continued amid the pandemic. Tech giant Xiaomi and Smartphone manufacturer Oppo have opened two separate plants in Istanbul, Turkey’s financial hub, and plan to offer employment opportunities to some 3,000 Turkish citizens.
Oppo would build another production plant in Turkey in the northwestern Kocaeli province, according to the Daily Sabah. (Xinhua/NAN)