Now we know the reason for the visits to properties last summer.

You may recall we reported about visits by tax inspectors to various properties in Marmaris and Fethiye area last summer where inspectors wanted to find out the sum paid for property. Many owners were nervous about the reason for the inspections but now, following the Finance Ministers announcement, all is clear.

He  announced that a special investigation into property tax fraud which took place in Fethiye and Marmaris last year has uncovered a 13 Million YTL (£5 million) tax fraud by 50 property developers. The developers are now being fined for the sum. The Finance Minister said he was embarrassed by the developers conduct.

The fraud centred on Turkish property developers who pressurised or misled foreign purchasers into recording a lower sale price on the property register than they had actually paid. The developers then under declared the tax they would have paid had the sale been recorded at the higher level. The special investigations team used land registry ID numbers to track transactions and confirmed the actual amounts payable by visits to actual properties and interviews with owners.

Following the success of this exercise special investigations are expected to widen this year to other tourist regions within Turkey.