Investment Zones Part 3: Free Zones
Free zones (FZ) are special sites deemed outside the customs area, although they are physically located within the political borders of the country. FZs are designed to boost the number of export-focused investments. Legal and administrative regulations in the commercial, financial and economic domains that are applicable within the customs area are either not implemented or partially implemented in FZs.
There are a total of 19 Free Zones in Turkey located close to the EU and Middle Eastern markets, 18 of which are active and 1 is at the stage of establishment. FZs are strategically located at points that grant easy access to international trade routes via ports on the Mediterranean, Aegean Sea and the Black Sea.
Advantages of FZs
• 100% exemption from customs duties and other assorted duties.
• 100% exemption from corporate income tax for manufacturing companies.
• 100% exemption from value-added tax (VAT) and special consumption tax.
• 100% exemption from stamp duty for applicable documents.
• 100% exemption from the real estate tax.
• 100% income and corporate tax exemption for certain logistics services to be offered at the FZs, provided that they are export-oriented.
• 100% exemption from income tax on employees’ wages (for companies that export at least 85% of the FOB value of the goods they produce in the FZs.
• Goods can remain in FZs for an unlimited period.
• Companies are free to transfer profits from FZs to abroad as well as to Turkey, without restrictions.
• Exemption from title deed fees when acquiring and selling a property.
• VAT exemption during construction, design, settlement and approval processes.
• Ready infrastructure exempt from VAT and other taxes.
• Import permit for second-hand, used machinery.