Pro-government newspaper says Turkish businesspeople moving assets abroad

Turkey’s top businesspeople are moving their assets abroad and using shell companies in order to prevent being traced, pro-government newspaper Takvim said on Tuesday.

It said the list of businesspeople moving their assets abroad included many famous names and that the amount of assets had been transferred recently to foreign countries was estimated to be more than $150 billion. Yet knowing the exact amount is impossible as the transactions are made using illegal means, it said. 

Takvim accused those businesspeople of increasing Turkey’s current account deficit by transferring assets abroad. It said that since authorities had to be notified about international transfers over $50,000, businesspeople used foreign investment companies operating in Turkey as a cover. 

Takvim listed Ali Sabancı, Ferit Şahenk, and Murat Ülker as Turkish businesspeople recently putting their assets on the market, without explaining the relation between those sales and illegal money transfers abroad.