Turkey holiday spot for foreigners, not for locals

Turkey holiday spot for foreigners, not for locals

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Turkey holiday spot for foreigners, not for locals

Many Turkish citizens are unable to enjoy the beautiful tourist destinations that the country has to offer because their disposable income is not enough to afford a one-week vacation, says a TÜİK study on household disposable income. DHA Photo

Most Turkish citizens are unable to afford a one-week vacation away from home and are unsatisfied with their living conditions in terms of basic necessities, according to a report that was released
yesterday by the Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK).

As in 2010 and 2011, the “Lifestyle and Income Revenues 2011” report also found that 18.5 percent of Turkish citizens are at risk of continuous poverty this year, up from 17.3 percent in 2009.

New furniture is a luxury

Some 86.5 percent of Turkish citizens cannot afford a week’s vacation away from home, 67.6 percent do not have enough money to spend on “unexpected expenditures” and 80.3 percent of citizens cannot afford to repair or replace their worn-out or shoddy furniture, according to the findings of the TÜİK study.

Detailed statistics from the new report revealed that 59.6 percent of the Turkish population resides in their own homes but noted that 41.6 percent complain that their homes have problems such as leaky roofs, damp walls or rotten window frames. Another 41.7 percent complain that their homes have insufficient insulation to protect them from the cold. A whopping 61.8 percent owe money in some form or another (not including the purchase of their home and expenditures related to that home). Of the 61.8 percent who owe money, 26.2 percent complain that these debts burden their household.

Ultimately, 16.1 percent of the Turkish population lives below the poverty line. In urban areas this figure is 13.9 percent, and in rural areas (with a population of less than 20,000 citizens) it is 15.7 percent.

On the basis of the nine variables used to measure abject poverty, those who meet four of these variables and are deemed “financially poor” amounted to 63 percent in 2009, 66.6 percent in 2010 and 60.4 percent in 2011.

The report also revealed that the average annual disposable household income in Turkey was 10,774 Turkish Liras. Not surprisingly, Istanbul has the highest disposable household income, at 14,873 liras on average. The Aegean region comes in second, at 12,924 liras per household, and the lowest average annual disposable income is found in southeastern Anatolia, at just 5,418 liras per household.