Turkish hotels’ debts to banks approach $10 billion

  • 3 months ago
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Turkey’s tourism industry is facing serious problems due to increasing hotel debt to banks, which now reaches almost $10 billion. This led to demands from credit institutions for the sale of real estate and repayment of debts.

Since the end of the pandemic, hotel debt in Turkey has reached $8.5 billion. The risk that banks could repossess the property has increased due to the expiration of loyalty agreements, the newspaper’s sources said.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the Turkish Statistical Institute (Turkstat, TUIK) report a record number of tourists in 2023, with more than 56 million visitors arriving in the country.

However, representatives of the tourism industry have expressed concern about its financial condition. Cumhuriyet estimates that Turkey does not have enough places to accommodate such a large number of tourists, and the target of attracting 60 million visitors remains a distant dream. In addition, 70-75% of hotels are pledged to banks, which require owners to sell their properties and pay off debts.

The publication notes that the massive appearance of tourists does not always mean an increase in tourism activity. Some visitors may only come for a short period of time to shop or transit through the country, but they are also counted in tourist statistics.

According to data from the Turkish Hotel Association TÜROB, hotel occupancy in the main tourist cities of Antalya and Istanbul fell from 62.2% to 56.2% and from 74.6% to 65.2% in 2023, respectively. Across the country, the rate decreased from 53.6% to 49.1%.

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