Syrian businesses thrive across Turkey: Report
Hacer Boyacıoğlu - ANKARA
The number of Syrian enterprises has been continuously increasing, fueling local economies especially in provinces near the Syrian border, a fresh report has shown.
In September, a total of 163 Syrian-partnered companies were launched across Turkey with an 85 percent year-on-year increase and 10 percent monthly increase, a report by the Economic Policy Research Foundation of Turkey (TEPAV) showed on Nov. 6. This figure is equal to nearly 12 percent of the newly launched foreign enterprises, according to the report, which was based on the Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges (TOBB) data.
In the southern province of Mersin at Turkey’s Syria border, Syrians are now the largest foreign entrepreneur group, according to September data. The southern provinces of Kilis and Hatay followed Mersin in terms of Syrians taking the highest share in all foreign enterprises with 36.4 percent and 19.6 percent, respectively.
In terms of the number of Syrian enterprises, Istanbul topped the list with 98 companies, followed by Mersin and Hatay with 39 and 11, respectively.
In the first nine months of the year, Syrians launched 1,248 enterprises in Turkey with a 4.7 percent increase compared to the same period of 2017, with 203.5 million Turkish Liras ($39 million) worth in capital, according to the report.
Nearly 7,000 enterprises were established by Syrians in Turkey since the outbreak of a civil war in Syria in 2011, which has led Turkey to host nearly 4 million Syrians. These companies employ nearly 100,000 people, the report also showed.
Istanbul top destination
According to figures compiled on data from the Interior Ministry’s Immigration Office, as well as media reports by Ajans Press, Turkey hosts 3.6 million Syrian refugees as of June.
Istanbul accommodates 561,159 Syrian refugees, marking the highest number, followed by the southeastern province of Şanlıurfa with 475,782 and Hatay with 445,095.
Other provinces hosting a high number of Syrian refugees are the western provinces of Bursa and İzmir, the southeastern provinces of Gaziantep and Kilis, the Central Anatolian province of Konya, and the southern provinces of Adana and Mersin. The number of Syrians exceeds 100,000 in all of these provinces.
The registered number of Turks in Kilis stood at 136,319 as of last year, while the province hosts a total of 131,109 Syrian refugees.