Turkish Foreign Direct Investment Law (FDI) is based on the principle of equal treatment, allowing international investors to have the same rights and liabilities as local investors.

The conditions for setting up a business and share transfer are the same as those applied to local investors. International investors may establish any form of company set out in the Turkish Commercial Code (TCC), which offers a corporate governance approach that meets international standards, promote the development of private equity and public offering activities, creates transparency in managing operations, and aligns the Turkish business environment with EU legislation as well as with the EU accession process.

Foreign investors can work as self-employed, establish any form of company set out in the TCC, or open a branch office or  a liaison office in Turkey.

Ateskan Law Office provides legal services required to start a business in accordance with the needs of their clients. We particularly offer the following services for business set-up.

  1. Business set-up for self-employed individuals.
  2. Establishing a company in Turkey in accordance with the TCC.
  3. Opening a branch office of a foreign company in Turkey.
  4. Opening a liaison office of a foreign company in Turkey.

Business set-up for self-employed individuals

This is the most inexpensive way to set up a business. You will be self-employed and work within a simple structure implying little bureaucracy in which, basically, you are paid with the profits of your company. You will not be considered as an employee, and will have less social benefits than you would as a regular employee. You will be liable for any and all losses incurred by the business.

What services do we offer?

  • Obtain residence permits or work permits.
  • Provide information about healthcare.
  • Registration with the Tax Authority and the Social Security System.
  • Help you to choose the right business name.
  • Business address (whether it will be only for correspondence or you will really make your business there).

Establishing a company in Turkey in accordance with the TCC

There are corporate and non-corporate forms for companies under the TCC, which states that companies may be established under the following types:

a. Corporate forms

  • Joint Stock Company (JSC)
  • Limited Liability Company (LLC)
  • Cooperative Company

Although some financial thresholds (i.e., minimum capital) and organs differ from each other, the procedure to be followed for establishing a JSC or an LLC are the same.

b. Non-corporate forms

  • Collective Company
  • Commandite Company

Although companies may be established according to these five different types, JSC and LLC are the most common types chosen both in the global economy and Turkey.

A limited liability company is the safest way to create a new business, since it is a separate legal entity from its owners, limiting their personal liability. The company is divided in shares with a specified minimum capital and can be owned by one or more shareholders. This business structure implies some regular bureaucracy which may bring additional periodical costs.

What services do we offer?

  • Ensure legal interests protected, especially when creating a company with several partners.
  • Drawing-up a notarial contract according to your guidelines, properly prepared and tailored to your objectives.
  • Ensuring that your Articles of Association contain all necessary elements.
  • Make sure that the application is made in accordance with the requirements of the TCC. With the power of attorney you will have granted to us, on your behalf we will register your company at all Government institutions and offices required by law.
  • Applying for company tax and identification numbers.
  • Obtaining all necessary documents, permits and approvals.
  • Dealing with bank formalities connected with setting up of the company bank account.
  • Once completed the registration process, we will draw up all other corporate documents required by the TCC.


In addition to these types of companies, branches and liaison offices may also be considered as two further alternatives when setting up a business in Turkey. However, branches and liaison offices are not considered to be legal entities.

Opening a branch office of a foreign company in Turkey

  • No shareholder
  • Not an independent legal entity. Its duration is limited to the duration of the parent company
  • No capital requirement, however, it would be wise to allocate a budget for the operations of a branch office
  • A branch office may be incorporated only for the same purposes as those of the parent company
  • Repatriation of branch profit is allowed. The branch profit transferred to the headquarters is subject to dividend withholding tax at a rate of 15 percent, which may be reduced by Double Taxation Prevention Treaties

Opening a Liaison Office of a foreign company in Turkey.

  • Main activity is to conduct market research and feasibility studies and to oversee investment opportunities in the Turkish market on behalf of the parent company
  • Not allowed to carry out any commercial activity
  • Required to obtain permit from the Ministry of Economy, General Directorate of Incentive Implementation and Foreign Investment
  • The condition of being operational for at least one year might be sought for permit
  • The initial permit is issued for three years and can be extended depending on the activities in the past three years and the future plans of the parent company
  • Applications of international investors to establish liaison offices to operate in sectors that are subject to special legislation, such as money and capital markets, and insurance, etc., are assessed by the relevant authorities

Please contact us to get further information about our legal services for individuals and companies.

Phone  : +90 (232) 33 22 110

GSM    : +90 (544) 288 52 80

email    : yusuf@ateskanlaw.com