There are two types of commercial banks in North Cyprus. There are branches of large banks that are seated in Turkey, and local banks. Transactions can be carried out in all hard currencies. The Central Bank of the TRNC is in charge of monetary, credit and exchange policy, and acts as banker to the government.
Banking as a section of industry in Northern Cyprus lately recorded a considerable growth. Especially after some severe tests in 2000 it has seen a careful and sustained consolidation, supplied with some sensible and necessary guidelines enforced by the Turkish Cypriot government. The traditional 'boom and bust' economy of this area has lead to a well structured and effective banking system which has close ties with many foreign banks including Barclays, Natwest and HSBC. Most expatriates in North Cyprus seem to like HSBC just due to their familiarity with it and brand name recognition. Branches of HSBC can be found in Nicosia, Kyrenia and Famagusta. To open an account in North Cyprus banks is a very easy and simple process. Your account can be set up in your choice of currencies including British Pound, US Dollars, Euros and the Northern Cyprus currency which is the New Turkish Lira (YTL).
All types of banking services are provided in Northern Cyprus and they are flexible enough to satisfy the continually diversifying needs of the business community. Recently banks in North Cyprus have expanded their activities beyond traditional banking and their services include insurance, leasing, hire purchase finance, factoring, mutual fund management, investment and consulting as well as custody and asset management services. They have also developed new products and services through electronic means. Your bank account can be easily reached via electronic access and through internet banking, now more and more widely used you can make a number of transactions worldwide. In most of the banks of the TRNC you will find a few English speaking employees, the best chance is in the foreign exchange section of the bank.
For non-residents of the TRNC there are investment opportunities provided by offshore banks which are positioned outside the country. They include business transactions in foreign currencies, lending and other financial services. The advantage of offshore banks is that they provide access to politically and economically stable jurisdictions. The aim of such units is to make an expansion of banking and trade services to non-residents of the TRNC, supporting an international financial centre.
For more in depth information on banks in Northern Cyprus please do not hesitate to contact us.