Overseas investments hit record $2.97 billion in 8 months
Total investments made by Turks overseas amounted to $2.97 billion in the first eight months of 2012, marking the highest figure Turkey has ever realized for this type of investment. The Turkish Central Bank's latest Balance of Payments report indicates that the total Turkish investment volume in foreign countries equaled roughly 26 percent of total foreign direct investment (FDI) -- $7.71 billion -- in Turkey between January and August of this year. This is a significant number considering that the total Turkish overseas investment between 2002 and 2012 stood at $18.7 billion. The Netherlands attracted the largest amount of Turkish investment in the first eight months of 2012. Observers cite a relatively better investment climate -- including tax benefits and state help -- for Turks choosing to invest in this country. The total value of Turkish investments on Dutch soil stands at $10.3 billion. A total of $2.1 billion was invested in the Netherlands in the January-August period of this year alone. The Netherlands' closest rival in Turkish investment was Azerbaijan with $245 million. Baku still remains more generous in directing investment to Turkey than Turks do in reverse. One critical detail in the bank report is that the FDI inflow to Turkey contracted by 29.3 percent in the first eight months over the same period of 2011. Food and construction were by far the two largest sectors that foreign investors preferred in Turkey. The food industry received $2.04 billion in FDI between January and August, a drastic increase of 251 percent over the same period of 2011. Construction enjoyed $1.27 billion in FDI in the same period, an even better performance with an enormous 529 percent boost over January-August of the year before. Likewise, Turks channeled their money into food sectors abroad with $1.9 billion in the given period, amounting to 85 times the investment made in this sector overseas over a year ago. The second most popular sector to invest in for Turkish entrepreneurs overseas was finance and insurance with $236 million.