If you’re shopping for a second citizenship, let me present a country with warm hospitality, rich and diverse culture, and an affordable cost of living: Turkey.
June 22, 2020
By: Bobby Casey, Managing Director GWP
It seems with all the stuff happening in the world, things have come to a veritable stand-still. Depending on where you are, and what you do for a living, that could very well be the case. I was in the US for much of the lock down for Covid-19. During that time, I did a cross-country trip in an RV and really thought about ways to improve myself and my skill set.
Like many others some of my revenue streams took a hit. The key here is diversification in my streams of income mitigated my overall losses. Having a few eggs in different baskets allowed me to weather that storm.
Whether investments, streams of income, or residency it’s important to have options in the event natural disasters or the disasters of government strike.
One resource every single country in the world has, costs nothing to procure, and is a guaranteed source of profit is their residency and citizenship. Depending on the country, the perceived value can be quite high. First world nations like the US have long, expensive processes; while other developing nations, like Paraguay, have relatively affordable processes and moderate timelines.
I don’t spend a lot of time on places with multi million dollar thresholds of investment because often that means giving that government millions of dollars in “donations”, and that’s not my thing. There’s no avoiding some fees, but if you’re trying to reduce your tax burden, then the last thing you’re looking to do is pay another government millions of dollars out the gate.
Turkey is a country that many might consider visiting, but few consider for citizenship or residency. It has the Black Sea to its north, the Meditaranean Sea and Cyprus to the south, Greece to its west, and Albania and Georgia to its east.
Istanbul is one of it’s more famous cities, but Ankara is its capital.
Having been there a few times myself, it really is a phenomenal place. The cost of living is low and affordable. Turkey has world renowned hospitality and the food is exquisite.
Here’s some information that might help inform your decision on whether to include Turkey on your expat consideration list:
Much like other countries in that region, it is very rich in history. What is unique about this country is, while the culture and history are old, the country of Turkey itself is rather young. Turkey became a country out of the fallen Ottoman Empire in 1923.
Turkey is a secular state with the majority of their constituents registered as Muslim; however, that is a default for everyone. You can be an atheist, but you’re still registered as a Muslim, as you must be registered as one of the three recognized Abrahamic religions.
There’s no requirement to practice it, but that’s the default. You can register as a Jew or Christian with documentation proving you are in fact a Jew or Christian.
So I guess Turkey is a little … quirky in that regard.
It’s a transcontinental nation with the majority of its geography in Asia and a small portion of its west end in Europe.
It’s one of the top ten tourist destinations in the world. Given its central proximity, it ranks 6th globally for number of international tourist arrivals (close to 46million foreign tourists per year).
It’s no wonder it’s a tourist destination, they have very moderate climates out there. Istanbul doesn’t get to 90 degrees in the summer, nor does it really get to freezing temperatures in the winter. The summers are dry rather than humid.
The beaches are picturesque, but so too are their inland areas like Cappadocia: famous for its hot air balloon rides as well as its unusual cone-shaped rock formations.
Politically it is, volatile. There have been four attempted coups in its less than 100 years of existence. It is one of the weaker points, but it would be ridiculous to ignore this since it has been four years since their last attempted military coup.
What is heartening about the failed coup in 2016, however, is that it hit social media, and ordinary people fought alongside the loyalists to defeat their own military in a matter of hours, some with nothing more than kitchen utensils.
It says something about the Turkish people: they want to keep the peace, and they aren’t fond of the idea of a junta.
They do have a high unemployment rate of over 10%.
According to Forbes:
Turkey’s largely free-market economy is driven by its industry and, increasingly, service sectors, although its traditional agriculture sector still accounts for about 25% of employment. The automotive, petrochemical, and electronics industries have risen in importance and surpassed the traditional textiles and clothing sectors within Turkey’s export mix.
If you haven’t been there, I highly recommend a visit. You won’t regret the vacation, but the visit might convince you of looking for a bigger commitment!
Turkey is one of those citizenship by investment nations with a lot of great benefits.
If you want to learn more about Turkey’s citizenship programs, check out the more in depth blog we have coming to GWP Insiders this week. We keep all our expat and digital nomad premium information there. As a member, you get unlimited access to our information, deep discounts on our services and resources, and unlimited consultations with me.
Click here to schedule a consultation on how you can protect your assets from overreaching governments, or here to become a member of our Insider program where you are eligible for free consultations, deep discounts on corporate and trust services, plus a wealth of information on internationalizing your business, wealth and life.