Turkish gov’t has ‘no nationalization plans for İş Bank or others’
AA photoThe government does not have any plans to nationalize İş Bank or any other lender, Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Şimşek has said following controversial comments by an aide to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan earlier in January.
The aide, Yiğit Bulut, called for the nationalization of the country’s biggest private bank, İşbank, in which the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) has a 28 percent stake, after lawyers for Erdoğan filed a lawsuit against CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu for describing the president as a “tin-pot dictator.”
The issue was brought to parliament by CHP deputies on late Jan. 28 as CHP Deputy Musa Çam questioned whether the government planned to seize İş Bank and whether any procedure had been launched against Bulut over his remarks.
Şimşek said İş Bank was one of the most successful and prominent lenders in Turkey during the Plan and Budget Commission meeting at parliament, according to Turkish broadcasters.
“Our government does not have any such plans for İş Bank or another bank. It is not on our agenda. The main authority here is the banking watchdog, BDDK, as only the BDDK is responsible for controlling and regulating lenders as an independent institution,” he said.
The CHP inherited a 28.09 percent stake in İşbank from the founder of the Turkish Republic, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, whose will stipulated that dividends go to the Turkish Language Association and Turkish History Association.
A foundation constituted by the bank’s employees holds a 40.15 percent stake in the bank, while the remaining 31.76 percent is listed on the Istanbul stock exchange.