An Overview Of Foreign Banks In Turkey

Turkey, as a developing country, is one of the major countries with an increasing amount of foreign capital entry. American, European, and Gulf banks have been interested in the Turkish banking sector for more than twenty years, establishing their own branches or acquiring Turkish banks. Today, more than twenty banks with foreign capital operate in Turkey.

The Commercial Bank of Qatar acquired a 71 percent stake in Turkey's  Alternatif Bank (Abank)  in 2013.  And they have now become the sole owner of the bank in a deal signed with Turkey’s Anadolu Group.  Qatar National Bank (QNB) signed an agreement with the National Bank of Greece to purchase NBG's shares in Turkey's Finansbank in 2015.

China International Trade Bank (ICBC) became the first Chinese bank to enter the Turkish finance sector and acquired a majority stake in Tekstilbank. On May 20, 2015, the bank started operating in Turkey.  ICBC  was later founded as ICBC Turkey in 2015 with equity capital of TL 420 million and raised this by TL 440 million within a year.

The Bahrain-based Al Baraka Banking Group founded its first participation banking venture in Turkey in 1984 with Albaraka Türk with a currently 54.06 percent stake in the bank. Islamic development bank owns 7.84 percent of the Albaraka Türk.

Yapı Kredi Bank that, as one of Turkey's largest private banks, is owned by Koç Financial Services Group, in which Italian UniCredito Italiano SPA has held a 50 percent partnership since 2002. 

Odeabank was established as the full subsidiary of the Lebanon-based finance giant Bank Audi In March 2012. And now, Bank Audi has a 76.42 percent stake in the bank.

BBVA as one of Spain's largest banks acquired 24.89 percent shares in Garanti for $5.8 billion in 2010, and then multiplied its stakes to 25.01 percent after acquiring General Electric's shares. With the latest developments, in February 2017, BBVA purchased an additional 9.95 percent shares in Garanti Bank.

In summary, Turkey has a geo-strategic advantage due to its position at the intersection of continentals, as Europe and Asia. But also has an encouraging, financial market with a growing population of approximately 70 million as of the end of 2005 and GDP increasing at 4.3 percent per year on average 3 between 2001 and 2005. In particular, the improving macroeconomic view of Turkish economy reflected in single digit inflation numbers and diminishing interest rates is a frequently pronounced reason for foreign bank entry into Turkey.

Last Updated: 4/9/2019 11:29:59 AM