President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
has claimed that “the worst is over” for the Turkish economy, hailing the improving figures in various parts of the economy from exports to domestic consumption.
Erdoğan also reiterated his long-running campaign against high interest rates, linking it to a bid to “boost investments” in a speech on June 17 at the general board meeting of the Turkish Exporters Assembly (TİM).
“Turkey’s exports witnessed an 8.9 percent year-on-year increase in the first five months thanks to the great contributions of our exporters. Some 2.2 percent of Turkey’s 5 percent first quarter growth was based on foreign trade. I am glad to see Turkey’s exports again became the motor of our GDP growth following five quarters of a slowdown. I believe we will see more growth in this area in the upcoming period,” he added.
Erdoğan claimed that nearly 1.2 million new jobs were created since February, in line with the government-led campaign for private and public sector players to boost employment.
“Our employment has again exceeded 27.5 million, the levels that we had reached before the July 15, 2016 coup attempt. I am sure that we will see single digit unemployment rates again,” he said, adding that Turkey’s recent employment, export and tax incentives encouraged more businesspeople to invest in the country.
“Some regression in the foreign exchange rates and ongoing record high levels in our main stock exchange have also fueled the positive outlook in our economy. Additionally, a decline in credit defaults and the recent stability in financial instruments also show that things are going well,” Erdoğan said.
A rise in domestic demand shows that “confidence is returning” to Turkey, added the president.
“To be sure, we need to strengthen other pillars of the economy, including exports. In this vein, we are increasing our incentives to exporters. We are pretty sure that we will be able to close our $10 billion loss in tourism through exports,” Erdoğan said, adding that the rise in the Central Bank’s foreign exchange and gold reserves was also of great importance.
“I hope we have left the worst behind. In all areas, we have been progressing forward,” he said, stressing that Turkey’s doors were “open to all investors.”
The Turkish president also once again stressed his call to decrease interest rates in order to “give a further boost to investments and employment.”