Last updated: December 20, 2019

The Turkish Republic stretches from the south-eastern edge of Europe eastward to the Middle East. It borders Greece and Bulgaria in the west, the Black Sea in the north, the Mediterranean in the southwest, and Syria, Iraq, Iran, Armenia and Georgia in the southeast and east. The capital Ankara is inland. Istanbul – the largest metropolis in Turkey – is located on the Bosporus with districts in both the European and the Asian part of the country. With 81 million inhabitants, Turkey is roughly as populous as Germany; their area, however, is more than twice as large.

Turkey emerged as the successor state from the Ottoman Empire, which was dissolved in the First World War. Mustafa Kemal Pascha, known as Ataturk, who proclaimed the republic in 1923 and became its first president, is considered to be the founder of the state. Up until his death in 1938, he carried out numerous reforms aimed at modernizing and secularizing Turkey and leading to a rapprochement with Europe in the long term.

In 1999 the EU Parliament made Turkey a candidate for EU membership. Accession negotiations began in 2005. Economically, the EU and Turkey are already very closely linked. More than 40 percent of Turkish foreign trade is carried out with the EU. In terms of import and export volumes, Turkey is one of Germany’s twenty largest foreign trade partners.

Since 2002 Turkey has been ruled by the AK party, which has won all elections since then. The president since 2014 has been Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who had previously led Turkey as prime minister. In April 2017, a narrow majority of the Turkish electorate voted in a constitutional referendum to convert the parliamentary system into a presidential one.

The Turkish economy has remained largely calm and stable since the attempted coup on July 15, 2016. The state of emergency ended after two years in summer 2018. Economic growth has fluctuated between three and seven percent over the past four years; growth of less than one percent is expected for 2019. The service sector holds the largest share in the economy with around 60 percent. Turkey is also one of the world’s largest producers of fruit, vegetables and herbs. Likewise, most of the new televisions and clothing textiles in Europe come from Turkey. In terms of motor vehicle production, Turkey ranks fifth in Europe.

The Doing Business Index 2020 published by the World Bank   attests that the country has a business-friendly business climate. In a global comparison, it is in 33rd place and is therefore on the same level as Switzerland or France.

Current tenders