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Turkey to Ease Curbs on Foreign Property Purchases, Sabah Says

Turkey plans to ease restrictions on purchases of real estate by foreigners, a measure that may increase foreign direct investment and help finance the current account deficit, Sabah newspaper reported, citing Erdogan Bayraktar, the minister for the environment and urban planning.

Legislation has been drafted that will remove the principle of reciprocity from regulations governing real estate sales, meaning that foreign citizens will be able to buy property in Turkey even if their own countries don’t grant comparable rights to Turks, Bayraktar said at a meeting in the southern city of Kahramanmaras, according to Sabah.

The measure will allow purchases by people from Russia and the oil-rich states of the Persian Gulf and Central Asia, Sabah said.

Leading Turkish developers welcomed the plan, Sabah said. Isik Gokkaya, head of the real estate industry group Gyoder, said it will increase direct investment in property to about $5 billion a year, above last year’s figure of $2.5 billion and the $3 billion annual average between 2005 and 2008, the newspaper said.

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