RIGHT OF FOREIGN INDIVIDUALS AND COMPANIES TO OBTAIN INFORMATION IN TURKEY
The right to information is the right of individuals and companies to access information and documents held by public authorities. In this way, public authorities become as transparent as possible. The Law on Right to Information numbered 4982 (in Turkish, “Bilgi Edinme Hakkı Kanunu” the “Law”) regulates the principles and procedures for real persons and legal entities to exercise their right to information and provides for means of information and document disclosure by public authorities. The Law also applies to foreigners living in Turkey and to foreign legal entities i.e. foreign companies carrying out activities in Turkey. The Law deals with the procedure to request for information and the limitations to their disclosure.
The Law provides the legal basis for all public institutions and organizations when responding to requests for information. The main principle of the Law is that every individual, both citizens and foreign individuals including foreign companies (in accordance with the principle of reciprocity), has the right to information.
Besides, Communiqué on Countries Covered by the Principle of Reciprocity in accordance with the Law (in Turkish, “4982 Sayılı Bilgi Edinme Hakkı Kanunu ve Buna Bağlı Yönetmelik Uyarınca Karşılıklılık İlkesi Kapsamında Bulunan Ülkeler Hakkında Tebliğ”, the “Communiqué”) prepared by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was published in the Official Gazette dated 19 May 2022, numbered 31840 and entered into force as of the date of publication. The Communiqué aims to determine the countries that are within the scope of the reciprocity principle in the applications to be made by foreigners residing in Turkey and foreign legal entities operating in Turkey.
As per the provisions of the Communiqué, foreign legal entities whether active through a liaison office or branches in Turkey, may benefit from the right to information in accordance with the principle of the reciprocity.
This Communiqué as of its publication date repealed the Communiqué on Countries covered by the Principle of Reciprocity on the Right to Information pursuant to the Law numbered 4982 on the Right to Information and the Related Regulation, published in the Official Gazette dated 17 October 2008 and numbered 27027.
Countries for which the condition of reciprocity is met, are listed as below:
|Bosnia and Herzegovina||Ecuador||Guyana||Latvia|
|San Marino||Pakistan||Turkmenistan||United States of America|
|Senegal||South Korea||Trinidad and Tobago||Vietnam|
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