Syrians boosting property market in southern city
Sibel Cingi ISTANBUL / Radikal
This picture shows the Hoşgör Square in Gaziantep. Many Syrians move to the city. DHA photoRich Syrians who have fled Syria but chosen not to live in tent cities have led to a boom in house rental prices in the southeastern province of Gaziantep. With much demand and little supply, apartments that used to rent for 500-600 Turkish Liras have now jumped up to 1,000-1,500 liras, according to local real estate agents.
“[That’s the price] if we can find an apartment for rent, of course,” said one, adding that rich Syrians were opting to rent, as money is not an issue for them.
Many Syrians are purchasing apartments or houses under the name of relatives living in the province, due to the lack of a reciprocity deal between the two countries.
Between 150 and 200 Syrian families enter Turkey at Akçakale customs gate every day, but there are many more illegal entrances, sources say. “Both rental demand and sale prices have risen significantly in the city. Prices had already started to increase due to urban transformation and migration from [the eastern province of earthquake-hit] Van. But the prices have gone through the roof as rich Syrians flocked in the city. There is trouble finding any house for [rent or sale] now,” said Ömer Kalender, the owner of a local real estate agency.
Fleeing Syrian citizens generally prefer large apartments with central heating, according to Kadir Çolak, another local real estate agent.
Demand for rental housing doubled compared with last year, said Oğuz Gültekin, the owner of Onur Real Estate Agency in Gaziantep.
NORTHERN IRAQ ALTERNATIVE ROUTE TO SYRIA
ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
Turkish goods can be exported to Syria via Northern Iraq, as basic food needs will increase in the upcoming period in Turkey’s unsettled southern neighbor, Turkey -Syria Business Council Vice President Sadık Yıldız said yesterday.
“Winter is approaching. It is not clear how long the unsettlement in Syria will last. If it continues northern Iraq may be an alternative [route to reach out to Syria] to supply basic foods,” he said.
The open border gates between that region and northern Iraq may be an important alternative in trade route, he said. The bilateral trade has almost come to a halt in 2012, he said, adding that Turkey recorded only $150 million of exports to Syria in last six months, a big portion of which is made up of electricity sales. Turkish businessmen have made $1 billion of investments in Syria, he said.