More than 7,300 foreigners granted Turkish citizenship since 2017

More than 7,300 foreigners granted Turkish citizenship since 2017

More than 7,300 foreigners granted Turkish citizenship since 2017

Some 7,312 foreigners have become Turkish citizens over the past three years by investing in property in the country, daily Milliyet has reported.

Turkey started a citizenship program in 2017. In 2017-2018, any foreigner investing $1 million in Turkey can apply for citizenship. Since Sept. 18, 2018, the limit was lowered to $250,000,” the daily reported on Nov. 22.

The data comes after a Turkish citizen asked the petition commission of Turkey’s parliament how many people applied to the program, while criticizing the model.

The commission later replied to the citizen with data from the Interior Ministry.

According to the ministry, in 2017-18, 70 foreigners applied for Turkish citizenship by investing $1 million each. These investors included 26 Iranians, six Yemenis, five Iraqis, four Palestinians, three Chinese nationals, as well as a few Azeris and Afghans. Some individuals from the U.K., the U.S. and Canada also were granted Turkish citizenship during this period.

After the decision to lower the investment quota for citizenship eligibility, the applications skyrocketed.

After September 2018, some 7,242 foreigners from 93 countries made property investments in the country, each investing $250,000.

In the second investors group, 1,690 Iranians lead the list. Some 994 Afghans, 920 Iraqis and 786 Yemenis follow suit.

According to the data, three Germans, 71 U.S. citizens, two Argentines, 10 Australians, five Brazilians, 17 Britons, 10 French citizens and 31 Canadians invested in property before applying for citizenship.

There have also been applications from smaller and more remote countries, including 20 from St Kitts and Nevis, 10 each from Antigua and Barbuda, individuals each from Belize, Djibouti, Comoros, Mauritania, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.

There are also two stateless people that got the Turkish citizenship.

Such investments are expected to increase due to the health care measures taken in Turkey against the COVID-19 outbreak, according to the daily