Bridge Together - 30/04/2014

GIM International Interviews Burak Keser, Head of Cadastral Development in Turkey

Christiaan Lemmen, contributing editor, GIM International

The Turkish Cadastre is currently in the midst of a process of renovation. A comprehensive updating of its data is needed in relation to capacity building, the introduction of modern services and e-government. Here, Burak Keser provides an overview of this huge project and insight into its impact on the country’s economic development.

Could you give a brief introduction to the history of land administration in Turkey?

As in many countries, the history of our land registry spans more than one and a half centuries. The first regulation on title deed transactions dates back to 1847, under the Ottoman Empire. We regard this year as the year our modern land registry was established. The directorate of ownership was founded in 1924. When the Directorate of Cadastre was affiliated to the organisation, it received its current name as the General Directorate of Land Registry and Cadastre. Today our institution carries out its legally founded activities as an affiliate to the Ministry of Environment and Urbanisation. As you see, we have a long history; there is a lot of knowledge and experience within our organisation.

What is your mission and how does the organisation look today?

According to the Civil Code, one’s right of ownership to a real property is only legally confirmed upon its entry into the land registry. The land registry and cadastre are the sources of information that forms the legal and technical basis for all kinds of land-related activities. Our mission is to ensure that a reliable land records are available, and we have 17,000 professional staff members helping us to do so. Our teams in land registry and cadastre provide services from 957 land registry directorates and 81 cadastral directorates all over the country, supported by 22 regional directorates. The senior management consists of a general director plus deputies and the board of land registry and cadastre. There are a number of consultation and control units under the general director in the headquarters in Ankara.

With regard to cadastre, what are the main responsibilities?

Our 81 cadastral directorates conduct cadastral transactions all across Turkey. In a very small number of areas the establishment of cadastre is ongoing. Furthermore, we have responsibilities related to forest cadastre, zoning practice, land unification, expropriation and of course control and archiving cadastral maps and plans.

And what about the land registry, which is related to cadastre?

For as long as we have existed, we have been providing a quality service in every single area of our country with a large transaction volume. Our 957 land registry directorates find solutions to property sale, donation, distribution, mortgaging and in establishment of servitude. Property transactions may concern partition or unification of property. Our activities transferred the equivalent of USD948 million in fee income to the budget in 2008 and that figure rose to USD3.1 billion in 2013.

Read the full interview in the online edition of GIM International.

Last updated: 27/02/2020