Turkey’s civil aviation authority known as the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (“Directorate”) has recently regulated the flight conditions, flight permits, procedures and principles of the application for flight permits for aircrafts registered in a foreign country (“Foreign Aircraft”) to operate its flight in the Turkish air space via the Circular numbered HUD-2020/1 (“Circular”). The Circular only covers foreign aircraft the flights for business purposes and air navigation service provider organizations.  

As per the Circular regarding the flight conditions, the foreign aircrafts are required to comply with the Turkish Civil Aviation Act numbered 2920, primarily, and the relevant regulations and the procedures of Aeronautical Information Publication (“AIP”) of Turkey for the flights to be operated in Turkish airspace. In commercial air transportation within the Turkish airspace, the aircrafts registered in the Turkish civil aircraft registry are mainly used. However, the Circular ways out closed charter flights, diplomatic flights, and foreign registered flights subject to permission and providing those are operated in the defined areas in Turkish airspace and also airports, heliports and helipads landing strips.

Along with the Circular, it is regulated that the application for flight permit can only be made for the aircraft belong to the local/foreign individuals and entities who have investments in Turkey, and for the flights carrying VIP government officials. The application must be made to the Directorate at least 15 days before the flight along with the flight permit request form and other documents provided in the form, and the application fee must be paid. In case of non-compliance with the time limit or the lack of required documents, the application shall be rejected. In addition, it was stated that the applications can be made for a maximum of 6 months but can be renewed until the end of the investment. Once the block permit is obtained, the normal flight plan is drawn, and flights are operated. One must be aware that flights to military airports that are open to permitted use are excluded from the scope of this Circular. In case there is a flight request in this direction, it is stipulated that the individual permit application shall be made to the Directorate. The applications for flight permits are finalized within 15 days provided that the information and documents are whole and complete and the non-compliance with the Circular requires administrative actions by the Directorate.

Nihan Ünal