Turkish financial services industry has gone through a radical structural transformation after the financial crisis in 2001.
Financial and Legal Services in Turkey
Turkish financial and legal services industries offer a wide range of opportunities. Under close
regulatory supervision, Turkish financial institutions boast very healthy financial ratios and a
bright growth prospects.
Turkish financial services industry has gone through a radical structural transformation after the
financial crisis in 2001. A new industry watchdog has been created and was mandated with
closely watching and enforcing strict reserve requirements. As a result, the Turkish banking
industry is considerably healthier than its European counterparts and survived the recent
financial crisis relatively unscathed.
Currently the loan to GDP ratio (around 50%) is considerably low and coupled with a healthy
expected GDP growth rate (average 5% for the next 10 years), the loan portfolio of the Turkish
banking sector is expected to grow 18% for the next 10 years. The deposits are also expected to
grow on average 15% for the next 10 years. Turkish financial institutions have considerably less
exposure to potential European debt issues and have an improving earnings growth outlook
compared to regional peers.
Non-bank financial institutions are still small compared to banks but due to Turkey’s rooted
stock exchange, the brokerage and fund business remain viable and healthy. Insurance sector is
also vibrant and top foreign players such as Aviva and AXA are all present in Turkey.
The legal services industry in Turkey is also going through a transformation. The number of
foreign firms present in Turkey increased along with the economic growth. Certain regulatory
barriers to entry still remain but this did not prevent top law firms such as Kinstellar, DLA Piper
and Clifford Chance from entering the Turkish market in recent years.
The Turkish government has undertaken a project to develop Istanbul as a regional financial
centre and the aforementioned sectors are expected to grow and change along with the evolution
of this project.
There are many opportunities for UK institutions in Turkish financial and professional services
ξ Banking: Investment banking JVs, M&A, consulting
ξ Insurance and Pensions: Privatization, fund management
ξ Accounting: Along with new commercial code, a number of different opportunities
ξ Legal Services: Joint venture, strategic partnerships with local firms.
Latest export opportunities – Financial & Professional Services
Latest export opportunities - Turkey
Getting into the market
Turkish financial services industry is heavily regulated and requirements are very strict. As a
result, Turkish banks are regarded as some of the safest in the world. Technology is widely used
and Turkish internet and telephone banking is one of the most advanced in the world.
Due to the young demographics of the country, consumer banking is also especially important
and very developed. Turkish financial services professionals are very well educated and most of
them speak at least one foreign language, English in most instances.
Turkish banks and other financial professional services institutions are open and used to
collaborating with foreign firms.
The banking licenses are distributed by the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency and the
selection process is kept rigorous to ensure the quality of the sector participants.
The law firms should apply to the bars of the relevant cities they plan to operate and the bars are
known to be neutral in admitting foreign law firms.
More about doing business in Turkey
Market intelligence is critical when doing business overseas, and UKTI can provide bespoke
market research and support during overseas visits though our chargeable Overseas Market
Introduction Service (OMIS).
To commission research or for general advice about the market, get in touch with our specialists
in country - or contact your local international trade team.
ξ Sinan Akkaya, British Consulate General Istanbul. Tel: +90 (0) 212 334 6437 or email:
ξ Itir Oner Filipucci, British Consulate General Istanbul. Tel: +90 (0) 212 334 6445 or
Contact your local international trade team
None at present.
UKTI runs a range of events for exporters, including seminars in the UK, trade missions to
overseas markets and support for attendance at overseas trade shows.
Latest events – Financial & Professional Services
Latest events – Turkey
More about OMIS and other UKTI services for exporters