IMF debt down to $400 mln, says PM

IMF debt down to $400 mln, says PM

ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
IMF debt down to $400 mln, says PM

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. REUTERS Photo

All of the debt Turkey owes to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will be paid by this May, as the debt, which rounded up to $23.5 billion when the AKP came to power, is now down to $400 million, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said yesterday.

Turkey is also currently in meetings to lend the organization around $five billion, Erdoğan said, which will end the country’s decade-long status of indebtedness to the IMF.

The prime minister said the government hasn’t paid debts solely to the IMF, but has also eased the burden of costs relating to the 2001’s banking crisis amounting to 111 billion Turkish liras that was on the government’s shoulder.

He accused the former coalition government parties of leaving that burden, “but the AKP has paid off all of them,” he said.

The public net debt stock’s ratio to national income was around 61.5 percent when the AKP’s term in office started in 2002, but by the end of 2011, the government succeeded in pulling the ratio to around 22 percent, he said. “This means in 2001 every 61.5 lira of the state’s 100 liras used to be debt.”

To make his point on the government’s debt elimination success more clearly, Erdoğan shared examples from foreign countries.

He said that the ratio of debt to national income is 236 percent in Japan, 126 percent in Italy, 107 percent in the United States and 83 percent in Germany, he said.

Turkey used to struggle to find long term loans such as in 2002 when maximum nine-month loans were given, whereas now it can be extended up to 69 percent, he said.