Even if they are not engaged in commercial activities, foreign-owned companies can establish liaison offices in Turkey for promotion, marketing and operational research. Liaison Offices carry out their activities and operations according to Liaison Office Regulations within the scope of Regulation for Implementation of Foreign Direct Investment Law No: 4875 dated 5/6/2003 depending on Ministry of Economy.
The liaison bureaus to be established obtain their first permission for 3 years from the Ministry of Economy. They can ask for an extension of time without waiting for this period. As known, the difference between the liaison offices and other capital organisations is that they do not carry on business in Turkey. For this reason, if there is any data for permission extension requests and establishment activities, the permission periods are carefully examined by the Ministry of Economy and cancelled. Therefore, foreign-owned companies which do not aim to make sales but to follow instruments on the market and get a network choose this procedure to minimise their costs and tax incentives.
- Liaison offices are expected to present a report to Under secretariat for the treasury containing the company’s activities in Turkey with detailed annual financial reports and direct investments.
- Besides, for legal entities to fund their operations in Turkey, the money sent to liaison offices should be brought to Turkey as foreign currency. For foreign companies to bring foreign currency to Turkey and encourage cash flow, The Turkish government has made funding clause in liaison offices dependent on currency. For this reason, they can bring their cash in EUR or USD currency in Turkish branches of banks to our country easily and manage their expenses utilising from TL exchange rate.
Financial Benefits of Liaison Offices:
- In Terms of Income Tax:
The liaison offices are exempt from income tax because they do not have any commercial activity within the borders of the country. According to 14th clause of 23. article of Income Tax Law No 193, Legal or business centre in Turkey are not subject to limited liability to services running alongside connoisseur of employers to pay wages in foreign exchange earnings through which the employer has obtained outside Turkey are exempt from income tax. This means that every gross earned salary will be paid directly without incurring the working income tax.
- In Terms of Stamp Tax:
According to legal regulations within the 23rd article of Income Tax, deduction of stamp tax cannot be applied to wages of personnel working in liaison offices.
- In Terms of Corporate Tax:
As is known, Limited and Joint Stock Companies are subject to 22% corporation tax since 2018 due to their business activities. As the Turkish entity will be not allowed to aim to make sales, make out an invoice and earn a commercial income, they can’t increase their assets and carry out commercial activities. Thus, there will be no deduction in terms of corporate income tax.
- In Terms of Social Security Withholding:
Employees coming to the liaison office in Turkey from abroad may be exempt from social insurance obligations regardless of their citizenship there is a social security agreement between Turkey and their countries and Turkey and the required social security deductions certificate has been obtained. In this regard, the provisions of the agreements signed between the two countries need to be consulted in detail.