Turkey Market Entry
- Market entry
- Forms and conditions of operation on the market
- Marketing and Communications
- Issues of intellectual property protection
- Public procurement market
- Payment terms, payment ethics and resolution of commercial disputes
- Visas, fees, specific conditions of travel to the territory
- Employment of citizens from the Czech Republic
- Fairs and events
Basic info for entering the market, rating, distribution and sales channels, factors affecting sales, important legal standards and regulations, import conditions and documents, customs system, customs and foreign exchange regulations, export control, protection of the domestic market. Check smber for agriculture and fishing facts of Turkey.
Before entering the Turkish market, it is advisable, especially for the first contacts, to use the services of an extensive network of semi-state interest and professional organizations and associations. These are mainly regional chambers of commerce, industrial chambers, manufacturers’ unions, associations of small and medium-sized companies for conducting foreign trade, associations of young entrepreneurs of Turkey, etc., where the mandatory membership of Turkish companies in the chambers guarantees a wide scope and reliability of information. The umbrella body for all chambers and associations is the Union of Chambers of Commerce and Industry and Commodity Exchanges TOBB, on whose Internet stands you can find the relevant contact details of all entities that must participate, or all chambers of commerce and industry and associations.
In the case of more technically and marketing-intensive commodities, entry into state contracts, competitions announced by state-owned companies, cooperation leading to production cooperation or the sale/purchase of a license, as well as the intention of permanent cooperation in third markets, the involvement and use of the services of a local representative is also strongly recommended. In some cases, an expensive but probably effective alternative is to send your own expert to the territory. Due to the specifics of the Turkish market and local customs, more frequent personal contact with Turkish partners is generally recommended. ZÚ Ankara, GK Istanbul and PaulTrade are ready to provide assistance in the selection and verification of such a representative.
The Turkish customs system, especially customs practice, is repeatedly the subject of criticism from both business partners and the economic diplomacy of a number of countries, including EU authorities.
The decisive elements determining the country’s foreign trade regime are the Free Trade Agreement with the EU, which concerns mutual trade in agricultural products, coal and steel products, and the Customs Union with the EU, which means participation in the Union’s common market with all other commodities. especially industrial products.
Basic documents in trade are EUR 1 for items covered by the above Agreement and ATR for all other commodities. From the beginning of 2019, it is then necessary in certain cases to document the Certificate of origin together with the A.TR. The aim of such a measure is to prevent the import of goods to Turkey from non-EU countries via the EU without paying customs duties. These documents must be accompanied by other documents according to the requirements for individual commodities. For each item, it is necessary for the Czech exporter to properly check the requirements in advance (the Turkish importer – his business partner – can best do this for him at the specific point of entry of the goods into Turkey) and then not be surprised by any “innovation”. Nevertheless, it cannot be ruled out that the importer will be surprised by a new requirement upon arrival at the Turkish border. Czech exporters are therefore urgently advised to use such delivery parities,
Information on regulations regarding imports into Turkey can be found on the website of the Ministry of Trade. Legal regulations regarding import, export, customs, etc. are further in English on specialized websites, but here it is already a paid service.
The trade barriers that the EU and Turkey are dealing with include, for example, the insufficient protection of trade marks related in particular to the food and clothing industries (more generally, it is a problem of intellectual property protection, the incorrect application of quotas for processed agricultural products, requiring licenses for older goods and the issue of importing alcohol to Turkey).
The issue of protecting the domestic market is characterized by specific features in the Turkish business environment. Although the customs union with the EU and the gradual adaptation to new conditions meant a fundamental change in the laws, the practice of non-tariff goods is marked by the favoring of domestic production. Tax-related measures for the import of luxury goods such as cars, perfumes, etc., are still in place, rather they can be expected to increase further.
Forms and conditions of operation on the market
On the basis of the Foreign Direct Investment Law, which represents a fundamental simplification of the procedure for establishing a company with foreign equity participation, the same rights and obligations apply to foreign investors as to Turkish entities, resulting from the valid Turkish Commercial Code ). These are in particular:
- the principle of equal treatment of foreign and domestic investors; ·
- foreign companies established in Turkey may acquire real estate; ·
- foreign natural persons may acquire real estate on the basis of reciprocity; ·
- companies can employ foreigners, but the necessity of a work permit remains.
The law applies to the following types of companies:
- Merchant (Single Proprietorship): a natural person who operates a commercial establishment is accepted as a business,
- Joint Stock Company: Share capital in the form of shares with a minimum value of TL 50,000, founded by just one partner (according to the new legislation),
- Limited Company: Minimum share capital TL 10,000, the company can be founded by only one partner (according to the new legislation). Partners guarantee up to the amount of the unpaid deposit,
- Commandite Company: The minimum amount of capital is not specified. General partners guarantee their entire property, limited partners up to the amount of the unpaid deposit,
- Collective Company: An association of natural persons established to conduct business activities under a common name. The minimum amount of capital is not determined. The partners guarantee all their assets.
The Commercial Code determines the forms of establishment of companies as well as strict accounting rules, the obligation to dispose of Internet information, etc.
Both a joint-stock company and a limited liability company can be founded by a single partner. The transfer of shares in the case of a single shareholder is subject to registration.
Procedure for establishing a company:
All founding documents must be drawn up in the Turkish language, the official language is also Turkish. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic recommends that Czech companies that want to establish a company in Turkey use a trusted Turkish citizen (lawyer, notary) equipped with the relevant credentials for this purpose. The “ISPAT – Invest in Turkey” portal is a very valuable source of information on how to establish a company in Turkey. www.invest.gov.tr, “Investors Guide” section.
Marketing and communication
There are a large number of advertising, PR and HR agencies operating in Turkey (from very professional to very bad). An overview of the TOP 10 can be found at https://www.sortlist.com/l/turkey-tr
The significant advent of modern technologies, especially social networks, is gradually displacing traditional advertising methods, which, especially in the regions, continue to be used by television and radio stations. Similarly, daily, periodical and specialist press are being transferred to electronic media, in which various products, the names of their manufacturers or importers and distributors are promoted. The ideal marketing must be adapted to the offered product and the planned target customer group. The use of direct marketing for foreign products is not recommended, especially due to a number of laws and other regulations, including language barriers and cultural differences.
In terms of modern electronic media, Instagram has the highest viewership and reach in Turkey, followed by Facebook. Other media have significantly lower viewership and access to customers. Instagram and Facebook also have the highest annual viewership growth and are popular among the numerically strong young generation. The existence and functioning of company websites is considered standard (their non-functionality or non-existence is perceived negatively).
From the point of view of the advertising campaign and marketing activities, it is important to remember that Turkey is a Muslim country that strongly clings to religious and national traditions. Any information or display of religious symbols, state symbols including the military, important politicians (or the person of the current president and the first president Mustafa Kemal Atatürk) can be evaluated as a criminal offense and punished very severely. We recommend contacting local Turkish companies that have accurate information and a professional sense for evaluating the suitability of advertising and marketing activities.
Chambers of commerce and industry can be used to search for business partners and publish demand (offer), both in the main trade centers and in individual regions. The Istanbul Chamber of Commerce (ITO), which brings together approximately 420,000 member companies – in the TWT Magazine of the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce, there is an option in the Offers and Demands directory. Useful information, including access to the database of Turkish manufacturing and export companies, can be obtained on the website of the Ministry of Trade of the Republic of Turkey – in the “Buy Turkish Products” section. The website of the Association of Turkish Chambers TOBB also enables the publication of company offers. It also contains overviews and internet addresses of individual Turkish Chambers of Commerce and Industry.
Issues of intellectual property protection
In some cases, especially in the case of more complex (military) technologies, there is copying and subsequent use in the production and sale of Turkey’s own products. In the case of filing a lawsuit, with the exception of music production, one can expect standard court proceedings. In the case of more complex or advanced technologies, the court will push for mediation with the goal of an agreement.
In general, Czech exporters to Turkey should not underestimate the issue of intellectual property protection (IPR). EC reports say that many counterfeit goods in EU countries also come from Turkey. Information on the current state can be found on the website of the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which also monitors the situation) The state of IPR in Turkey is reflected in the “Global Competitiveness Report” published by the World Economic Forum, which ranks the issue of IPR protection in Turkey in 61st place among a total of 140 evaluated countries.
Public procurement market
The awarding of public contracts in Turkey is regulated by the Public Procurement Law No. 4734 (Public Procurement Law dated 4/1/2002, publication 22/1/2002). This law is continuously amended and is legislatively linked to a number of other laws (Public Procurement Contracts Law, Act on Foundations, Act on Cultural and Natural Heritage, etc.). In addition, some projects are not subject to this law. For example, tenders for army contracts, security service contracts, as well as consulting services during privatization, goods and services for the development of research within national scientific and research institutions, decontamination of seas and waters, goods and services for the General Directorate of Sports are completely outside the above-mentioned law. including sports federations, road repair, archaeological research, etc.
The law, but especially the practice of awarding public contracts, is not completely transparent, and the area is repeatedly criticized both in regular EU evaluation reports evaluating TR’s readiness to join the EU, and also by the participants in tenders themselves, who are faced with a whole range of administrative and other obstacles. If the embassy of a foreign country shows interest in the course of the tender procedure, the offering company gains a better position in the eyes of Turkish partners. In this context, we recommend informing ZÚ Ankara or GK Istanbul when participating in a public tender for state contracts.
The Turkish Privatization Administration publishes information on privatization and overviews of individual projects on its website. Some currently announced privatization tenders are published by the Turkish investment promotion agency “ISPAT Invest in Turkey”. A useful source of information about tenders in Turkey (in English, sorted by category) is provided by the website www.globaltenders.com, section Turkey. Details of the tenders can only be obtained on the basis of payment of the subscription. Some tenders can also be found in the Turkish paid database TEBANEWS or YATIRIMLAR, but it is a paid service.
Although the risks of doing business in Turkey are not significantly greater than in the transforming countries of Central Europe, the Office of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic recommends always requesting information regarding the company register on a new partner. In Turkey, however, there is no central commercial register in the form we are used to from our corporate environment. Information of this type must be requested, e.g. through ZÚ Ankara, GK Istanbul or PaulTrade Istanbul, from the relevant chamber of commerce or industry according to the place of registration of the subject, which, on the other hand, is mandatory against our customs.
The rules for payment between business partners in the Czech Republic and Turkey apply the same as for any other session. In addition to the creditworthiness and reputation of the partner company, it is also necessary to take into account the commodity in question and take it into account when choosing payment terms – unlike a confirmed and irrevocable L/C, in the event of insolvency or bankruptcy of the customer, it does not provide a guarantee for the payment of the goods, nor a documentary direct debit or any other form payment without a suitable bank guarantee.
- Detailed information on tenders issued on the basis of EU pre-accession assistance programs, so-called IPA funds, including individual tenders issued, is provided by the website of the relevant Turkish contracting unit Central Finance & Contracts Unit, which works on the basis of an agreement with the EC and is subordinate to the Undersecretariat of the Prime Minister for finance. Special attention should be paid to the search in the “Forecast” item, which indicates that a tender will be issued several months in advance.
- The Turkish Privatization Administration publishes information on privatization and overviews of individual projects on its website.
- The website www.globaltenders.com, section Turkey, provides information on tenders in Turkey (in English, sorted by category).
At present, it is very complicated for Czech companies without in-depth knowledge of the local environment or without a local intermediary to be successful in announced public tenders.
Payment terms, payment ethics and resolution of commercial disputes
The requirements for the supply of goods and services between merchants (including payment terms) are set out in Article 1530 of the Turkish Commercial Code (“TCC”), which is based on the EU Directives 2000/35 / EC and 2011/7 / EU on combating late payments in commercial transactions and as such, it was transposed into Turkish law based on EU directives.
According to Article 1530 of the TCC, the standard payment period is 30 days. The parties to a commercial contract for the supply of goods and services may contractually agree on a longer payment period of a maximum of 60 days. An extension of the payment period beyond 60 days is possible only if the extension does not cause unjustified harm to the seller and the parties expressly agree on the extension of the payment period in the contract. If there is a delay, the buyer is entitled to demand interest on the delay and compensation for damages, provided that the general conditions set out in the customs conditions are met.
In case of unpaid invoices, we recommend contacting one of the local legal offices. The enforcement of the law in business matters is, despite certain specifics, fair and especially in cases of proven non-payment, vigorous. It is necessary to expect that law firms will charge a commission on the amount paid.
In the case of a conciliation/arbitration court, it is recommended to designate Turkey as this place, where enforcement of the law is faster and cheaper for the Czech applicant than Switzerland, which is often used (Turkey has the same interpretation and code as Switzerland).
Arbitration, using the Istanbul Arbitration Center (Istanbul Tahkim Merkezi – www.istac.org.tr), is also a possible dispute resolution method if companies decide to prefer quick dispute resolution through arbitrators.
For deliveries, e.g. of consumer goods for unverified (or smaller) TR customers, then the only guarantee for CZ suppliers is payment of the goods in advance.
Visas, fees, specific conditions for traveling to the territory
Basic information: We recommend that you find out the conditions of entry and stay before your trip at the Embassy of the Republic of Turkey in Prague and continuously monitor the development of the situation during your stay in the territory. Also check the conditions of transport with your carrier, including transit and transit countries. You can consult basic information here:
- ·http://prague.emb.mfa.gov.tr/Mission ·
- https://www.mzv.cz/jnp/cz/cestujeme/aktualni_doporuceni_a_varovani/x2020_04_25_rozcestnik_informaci_k_cestovani.html ·
General principles for entry and stay: In order to enter and stay in the territory of a foreign country, citizens of the Czech Republic must meet the conditions set by its laws. Communicating the current conditions of entry and stay in the territory of a foreign country is the responsibility of the embassy of the given country – in the case of Turkey, it is the Embassy of the Republic of Turkey in Prague. The following information is intended for basic orientation. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic therefore recommends that Czech citizens check with the embassy of the country they are visiting before traveling whether the conditions for entry and stay have not changed.
Visa-free travel options: Since 1991, a visa-free agreement has been in place between the Czech Republic and TR for diplomatic and official passports of the Czech Republic and for diplomatic, official and special passports of TR. Effective January 1, 2005, the government of the Republic of Turkey abolished the visa requirement for holders of Czech Republic passports who travel to the Republic of Turkey for tourist purposes and whose stay does not exceed 90 days within 180 days.
Visa requirement for holders of regular travel documents of the Republic of Turkey: Citizens of the Republic of Turkey who hold a regular travel document are subject to a general visa requirement.
Visa requirement for holders of ordinary travel documents of the Czech Republic: In the case of an anticipated short-term stay for purposes other than tourism, it is recommended to always inform the Embassy of the Republic of Turkey in Prague about the conditions of entry, as in such cases a visa requirement may arise. Any violation of the conditions of entry or stay may lead to denial of entry to the territory of the Republic of Turkey and subsequent deportation or direct deportation.
Conditions for the duration of validity of the travel document for entry and stay, including proof of identity: We remind citizens of the Czech Republic of the necessity to always have a valid passport with them without exception. Before traveling to the Republic of Turkey, it is necessary to verify the validity of the travel document. Turkish Law No. 6458 on Foreigners and International Protection states according to Article 7, paragraph 1) letter b) that (note: free translation): “Foreigners who will be refused entry to Turkey are those (…) whose passport or travel document expires sixty days before the expiry of the visa, visa exemption or residence permit”. Due to the unclear interpretation, when it is not clear whether it is counted sixty days before the expected end of stay of visa-free foreigners or the length of the possible maximum short-term stay, it is recommended to use your own discretion, that the holders of travel documents of the Czech Republic have a passport/document valid for 150 days before entering the territory of the Republic of Turkey (i.e. the maximum length of a short-term stay of up to 90 days and the aforementioned grace period of 60 days). The conditions of entry into its territory are always determined by the Republic of Turkey, and for that reason it is advisable to find out the conditions of entry and expected stay directly at the Embassy of the Republic of Turkey in Prague. Remember that you cannot travel to the Republic of Turkey on a Czech Republic identity card.
Form for arriving passengers (by air, land, sea): ·
Links to selected air carriers in Turkey:
- Turkish Airlines
Selected information for departure/return from/to the Czech Republic:
Entry into the territory of the Czech Republic according to information from the Ministry of the Interior of the Czech Republic: ·
We remind all travelers of the possibility of registering in the DROZD system: ·
ATTENTION! The information is not exhaustive – it can only be obtained from the relevant local authorities, carriers and service providers. The possibility of out-of-dateness or inaccuracy is hereby also reserved, despite all efforts to provide information in proper quality. Information and links are without legal effect.
Employment of citizens from the Czech Republic
Czech-Turkey International Agreement on Social Security: On 1 January 2005, the Agreement between the Czech Republic and the Republic of Turkey on Social Security entered into force (hereinafter referred to as the “Agreement”). An Administrative Agreement was negotiated for the said Agreement, the validity of which is tied to the Agreement. The aforementioned contractual documents were published in the Collection of International Treaties of the Czech Republic (http://aplikace.mvcr.cz/sbirka-zakonu/) with the following numbers: 9/2018 Sb.ms, 10/2018 Sb.ms Personal and material scope of the contract in the scope i.a. the provision of sickness, health and pension insurance benefits (old-age, full disability and partial disability, widow’s, widower’s and orphan’s pension), increase in disability pension, funeral allowance, child benefits and unemployment benefits, including jurisdiction to legal regulations, can be consulted on the website Czech Social Security Administration (https://www.cssz.
Contacts to competent institutions in the Czech Republic: ·
- Sickness and pension insurance Czech Social Security Administration Křížová 25 225 08 Prague 5 ·
- Health Insurance Center for Interstate Payments Náměstí W. Churchilla 2 113 59 Prague 3 ·
- State social support (child and funeral allowances) Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs of the Czech Republic Na Poříční právu 1/376 128 01 Prague 2 ·
- Unemployment benefits Administration of employment services of the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs of the Czech Republic Na Poříční právu 1/376 128 01 Prague 2
Institutions in the Republic of Turkey regarding employment, residence and social security: Within the Republic of Turkey, the following institutions are important state administration bodies for the performance of employment and social security: ·
- Ministry of Labor and Social Security (Çalışma ve Sosyal Güvenlik Bakanlığı): https://www.csgb.gov.tr/ ·
- Social Security Office (Sosyal Güvenlik Kurumu): http://www.sgk.gov.tr/wps/portal/sgk/tr/ana-sayfa/hosgeldiniz ·
- Regarding the residence of foreigners, the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Turkey can be consulted: https://en.goc.gov.tr/general-information41
We recommend that you find out the conditions of your stay, including the completion of related requirements such as, among other things, a possible work permit/ providing services at the Embassy of the Republic of Turkey in Prague: http://prague.emb.mfa.gov.tr/Mission
Clause: The above information is for informational purposes only and is not legally binding. Please note that they may be out of date at the time of your planned trip. Before traveling to the Republic of Turkey, it is therefore always advisable to contact the Embassy of the Republic of Turkey in Prague.
Fairs and events
- February 2-6, 2022: AgroExpo Izmir – the largest agricultural fair in the country
- August 31 – September 3, 2022: CNR Food – the largest food fair in the country
- September 15-18, 2022: Zuchex – the largest kitchenware fair in the region
- September 17-18, 2022: Contemporary Art İstanbul – the largest art fair in the country
- 8-10 March 2023: EuroAsia Rail – the country’s largest rail technology fair