Reform package under the shadow of mandate…

We can see that lately economic developments have been overshadowed by political events. As I witness people in the subway discuss about the recent elections, I can notice that they are fed up with this mandate conflict, no matter what political view they have.

Under these circumstances, the economic reform package was released yesterday. As I said earlier, the package contained a series of “emergency measures”, which means the package lists the matters that need urgent attention, particularly including banking and energy sectors, even a significant capital increase in public banks. I must say that I disagree with those who heavily criticise this move as the founding principle of public banks is definite. I’m obviously upset and concerned by the misuse. But it’s the public banks that provide the greatest support to the SMEs. We cannot ignore that.

The package also involves revisions for ‘arrangement with creditors’ and ‘debt restructuring’. But I must warn the administrators that if they are planning to save all of the companies, I’m afraid they might lose it almost all. Therefore, “positive discrimination” may serve us well. Also, exports, technology, value-added, and digitalization must be considered high priorities.

Government couldn’t achieve any savings yet to reduce public expenditure. But, it was told that we’ll soon hear the good news. I’d like to emphasize once again that public expenditure and investment matters should be revised thoroughly. For instance, instead of building airports, bridges or motorways, we should try completing fibre optic infrastructure of Turkey from now on. In territories where underground fibre optic cable laying is difficult, we can use microwave technology. All of these operations cost no more than 30% of money Government spent to erect Osman Gazi Bridge and link roads. If we can do this, Turkey’s GDP will increase more than expected (more than 15%-25%) until 2030.

“Structural Reforms are essential for sustainability…”

Improvements in agriculture are likely to reflect on prices in the medium and long term. We are facing a one though problem to solve. That’s why the government needs to take brave measures to improve stock farming and stockbreeding.

Government declared that tourism, logistics, education and justice will undergo strong revisions as well, but no further details were provided about how all these endeavours will become a reality. International Financial Institutions said, “These are all beautiful hopes, but we need see the government achieve something substantial.

In short, government’s statements generate expectations that this time, this reform package will reach a higher level than the former “matters that need urgent attention” and “matters that better be handled” projects. Nevertheless, these reforms will not last unless justice, human rights and freedoms, and education in Turkey undergo fundamental changes.

In reference to yesterday’s report, I’d like to point out that we won’t even need to call for the IMF if we can get our priorities straight. We can do it as long as we show to the world that we are eager to do what needs to be done.