Friday, 11 October 2013

All Change in April 2014



Moving abroad is fraught with anxieties wherever you choose to settle and the bureaucracy involved in gaining and then maintaining a residency permit is high on the stress-inducing list. In Turkey, permission to stay is granted via local passport police and their "creative" interpretation of the rules is the source of much invective on the ex-pat forums. In some areas $500 a month is considered enough to support an application, recently in Bodrum $1000 a month has been required.  Some places accept proof of monthly pension payments, others require you to have the whole amount in the bank for the length of the permit, and so on with the other criteria. 

This situation will soon (hopefully)  just be a bad memory. A new Foreigners and International Protection Law was passed in April this year and The Directorate General of Managed Migration (DGMM) is responsible for implementing this law which comes into force in April 2014.  Mr Atalay Uslu from the DGMM has been touring the foreign embassies and consulates to find out about the foreign demographic living in Turkey and is open to suggestions on how the new laws can be formed to make life simpler for non-native residents.  He hopes to wipe out the discrepancies and anomalies in the present system and has already announced that Migration Management offices, run by the civil service with English speaking staff and a standardised rule book, will be set up all over Turkey and abroad. Offices are set to open in Aydın in  December 2013 and in Bodrum, Marmaris and Fethiye by April 2014.  These offices will also be offering Turkish language courses.  


This good news was imparted at a Consular meeting chaired by Ms Deniz Korkmaz, the Bodrum Pro Consul and Ms Joanne Pietsch, Consular Network Co-ordinator, based in the British Consulate in Istanbul.  The Bodrum Mayor, Mr Mehmet Kocadon, also made a cameo appearance to remind us what he looks like.  About 40 people attended to hear what's new and what's not but I won't bore you with the details here. If anyone is keen to know exactly what was discussed you can email backtobodrum@gmail.com and I'll give you a summary. 

If you have questions or suggestions you can contact Deniz Hanim at bhcbodrum@fco.gov.uk 

18 comments:

  1. . . includes voting rights and us guys get to do our military service in the Jandarma (so it says) :-)

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    1. Not so Alan. These rights/obligations are specifically excluded.

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  2. The main point stressed at the meeting was that the laws are not yet set in stone - we will have to wait until April.

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  3. Anything that clears up a muddle will be welcome by the sound of things....here it is pretty welll set in stone...unless you are mainland Chinese in which case you just wave a chopstick and you're in.

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    1. I find it strange that a law that is passed in April 2013 is liable to changes in the year before it is implemented. BUt I no looking for logic here will only lead to madness.

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  4. Thanks for the very clear and succinct summary.

    We never seem to get more than a couple of days notice of these meetings - I think we just missed one in Kuşadası

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    1. The Kusadasi one was at the same time as the Bodrum one. You should sign up to the UK consulate news letter or Facebook page to get notice of all the meetings.

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    2. I am signed up. But never seem to get a full week's notice. And yes, I know I'm retired, but we do keep pretty busy!

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  5. Hi Annie! I love the way you are so into life in Bodrum/Turkey. Good for you!

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    1. I've been away most of the summer so I'm throwing myself back in.

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  6. B to B, Here in Istanbul, all you need is $300 a month - and it's got to be the most expensive place to live in Turkey! We also think that if you own property in Turkey, all you need is your tapu but we're not sure about that. Anyway, yes, I get the feeling that they are trying to make it a bit easier for foreigners to get an ikamet.

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    1. The next problem will be house owners who want to stay all summer will have to apply for a residency permit but if they stay out of Turkey for 6 months their permit may be revoked. Hopefully Mr Uslu, having been made aware of these problems will provide a solution.

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  7. A consistent, easy-to-follow process - now that would be something. I have to say, though, our own journey through the residency maze was relatively pain-free.

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  8. I had no idea how the residency process work, quite an information to take it all in, so good that you are well involved, all the best. And my best wishes for Mutlu Bayramlar!: ) Ozlem x

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  9. Dear Annie, this whole new procedure and new organization sounds like a good thing to me. Are you pleased with the changes? Peace.

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  10. It's a minefield for expats at the moment, so anything that is going to make it simpler would be welcome. I'm glad I don't have to apply for residency. I wouldn't know where to start.

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