According to information from the Alanya City Police Headquarters Foreigners Bureau, though Germans, with 2,749 residents, followed closely by Danes, at 2,082, still top of the list in terms of foreigners residing in Alanya, they are closely followed by people from an increasingly wide spectrum of countries.
Broken down by nationality, Alanya’s foreign residents are as follows:
Afghanistan, 3; Germany, 2,749; the US, 55; Argentina, 1; Albania, 2; Australia, 5; Azerbaijan, 383; Barbados, 1; Belarus, 51; Belgium, 64; Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2; Brazil, 2; Bulgaria, 35; Algeria, 1; Czech, Republic, 10; China, 13; Denmark, 2,082; Indonesia, 5; Armenia, 14; Estonia, 15; Morocco, 5; the Philippines, 4; Finland, 196; France, 16; Ghana, 1; Guyana, 1; Georgia, 131; Holland, 634; Iraq, 2; England, 475; Iran, 11; Ireland, 66; Spain, 3; Sweden, 303; Switzerland, 30; Italy, 12; Jamaica, 1; Japan, 3; northern Cyprus, 6; Canada, 6; Kazakhstan, 83; Kyrgyzstan, 117; Latvia, 9; Lithuania, 29; Lebanon, 2; Luxembourg, 1; Hungary, 14; Macedonia, 5; Malta, 1; Egypt, 2; Mongolia, 1; Moldova, 225; Norway, 521; Uzbekistan, 71; Pakistan, 1; Poland, 97; Romania, 26; Russia, 769; Serbia, 1; Slovakia, 9; Slovenia, 3; Sri Lanka, 1; Sudan, 1; Syria, 5; Saudi, Arabia, 2; Chile, 3; Tajikistan, 4; Thailand, 2; Tunisia, 7; Turkmenistan, 41; Ukraine, 297; Jordan, 2; New Zealand, 2; Yugoslavia, 2; and Greece, 4.
Data regarding property-owning foreigners in Alanya also reflects the wealth of nations represented in the area. According to figures from the Alanya Directorate on Deeds and Titles, there are a total of 13,024 foreign property owners in the region, from 33 different countries. The amount of land sold to foreigners in Alanya thus far equals 1.5 square kilometers.
Figures on this front are as follows:
Germany, 4,385; the US, 19; Australia, 2; Austria, 96; Belgium, 330; Bosnia and Herzegovina, 1; Denmark, 1,948; Estonia, 2; Finland, 179; France, 28; Holland, 2,206; England, 796; Ireland, 1;563; Spain, 2; Sweden, 203; Switzerland, 20; Italy, 20; Canada, 3; northern Cyprus, 41; Lithuania, 3; Luxembourg, 2; Hungary, 3; Macedonia, 3; Norfolk, Islands, 1; Norway, 1;104; Poland, 4; Portugal, 3; Russian Federation, 45; Serbia, 2; Slovenia, 1; Ukraine, 3; New Zealand, 1; and Greece, 5.
Why they choose Alanya
Among the factors driving foreigners to choose Alanya as a place to invest in property are reasons like climate, human relations, ease of life, natural beauty and favorable prices. Norwegian policeman Fam Steindal (52), his computer programmer wife, Gerd Lamberg (50), and their daughter, Nina Brojhem (25), bought a home in Alanya two years ago, and spoke to an Anatolia reporter about how happy they were with their decision. Steindal explained they are currently not permanent Alanya residents since he is still working, but that on retirement their plan is to make Alanya their permanent home. “First of all, life here is easy. People help each other. Transportation is easy. And the climate is fantastic. We try to be here as much as possible, especially during the winter months.”
His wife said that it is the warmth of human relations in Alanya that proved a magnetic force for her, and that she has experienced not the slightest problem getting used to Turkish culture. She expressed the wish to spend more time in Alanya in the future.
Alanya Mayor is pleased
Alanya Mayor Hasan Sipahıoğlu noted that his municipality is very pleased with the high number of foreigners living in the city and its surroundings: “This tableau is a sign of tolerance and understanding of peace from Turks and the citizens of Alanya. It is an important message to the world.” He also notes that not only are there no problems between the resident foreigners and local citizens, but that the foreigners have made important contributions to social and economic life in the city.
Touching on a few of the difficulties which might be encountered with a rise in foreign population in Alanya, Sipahıoğlu said: “We are paying attention to some of the foreign habits, desires and expectations in terms of municipality services. But the service we provide is received well by them.” He added that due to the considerable population of foreigners in Alanya a foreigners’ council has been formed in the Alanya Municipality “with the aim of listening to foreigners’ perspectives, understanding their problems, and trying to contribute to solutions for them.”
Within this framework Sipahıoğlu also touched on the requests for foreign cemeteries and churches, noting that while Alanya Municipality did not have the funds for church building, that foreigners could gather money amongst themselves to do so. As for foreign cemeteries, Sipahıoğlu noted that Alanya had already opened some.
Mahmutlar Mayor Alaadin Cakir spoke about the important contributions made to his municipality by the high number of foreigners living there. “Foreigners become accustomed to our ways here very easily. They shop at the local bazaars, they go visit neighbors, participate in funerals; in fact they even pin on money at weddings, in the Turkish style. They do so with incredible joy.” Cakir also spoke about the steep increase in construction in his municipality as a result of foreigner interest, noting that nearly 5,000 homes for sale to foreigners had been built recently.
Alanya Trade and Industry Chambers President Kerim Taç also underlined the important contributions made to life in the region by the resident foreigners, noting that money brought in from abroad was being spent in Alanya, and that this was helping the markets. He also pointed to local merchants as being very satisfied with the situation.
In addition Taç noted that foreigners themselves have gone into business in Alanya, pointing to the more than 200 businesses with foreign partners in Alanya. The nature of these foreign-partnered businesses, noted Taç, is as varied as the countries from which the entrepreneurs hail. Talking about the desire to keep things going in the direction they have taken, Taç added, “We need to take precautions now to make sure we don’t experience problems in the future.”