Sometimes, the government officials in Turkey make positive or negative comments about the positive and negative data obtained through analyses comparing Turkey and European. These comments include statements such as “Germany is jealous of Turkey”, which tend to trigger different reactions in the society. I was recently in Berlin and had the chance to observe the public services offered in the country at first hand.
– Turkey provides a better healthcare service when compared to Germany. In particular, it is noticeable that the elderly is left on their own to take care of themselves. The reason why retired German citizens want to live in Turkey is not just the low value of Turkish lira, but they also think that they receive better healthcare service at a more reasonable price in Turkey.
– Not all drugs are available at pharmacies. The social security system does not meet every demand, not to mention that medicines are more expensive than they are in Turkey, in terms of purchasing power.
– Both in Germany and Turkey, food items are expensive purchasing power-wise, but Germany, there are numerous eating options that are suitable to each budget. Unfortunately, Turkey is quite expensive when compared to the amount of money spent with family members on a holiday.
– Meat prices are more expensive in Turkey than in Germany. As for the public transportation, it is similar in both countries, in proportion to people’s incomes.
– German people are no longer “hardworking and punctual” as they were once used to be. Gradually losing its production power, it seems that Germany is now more focused on the tertiary sector of the economy. However, even like this, it is far ahead of Turkey with regard to production capacity and output.
– Like Turkey, construction activity is active in Germany as well, but unlike Turkey, it is a well-planned and well-monitored process. The renovation of old buildings is undertaken by nationwide and international brands and they do not just erect apartment buildings but also sports grounds, art and cultural centres near them.
– Numerous parks, ponds, canals, jogging and cycling tracks are a beautiful part of Berlin’s urban landscape. Each of them is regularly cared and maintained. The parks are open to public every day of the week and they are not surrounded by concrete walls in contrast to Turkey. There are alternative routes made available for vehicle traffic. In Turkey, on the other hand, the parks that people can enjoy are mostly not available in big cities.
This was an economic comparison between both countries. As for social and political differences, the most important one is that German people can freely execute their democratic right to protest, to freedom of assembly, and to freedom of speech under their constitution. The democracy is healthy and vibrant in Germany’s squares. The police’s duty is to protect the protesters, not to disperse them. In Turkey, it’s a whole different situation. The police in countries such as France and Hungary also use force against protesters, like they do in Turkey. For all these reasons, Germany offers a more preferable life compared to other countries.
When I chatted with Turks who have immigrated to Germany, I understood that none of them have any intention of returning to Turkey permanently, but they are planning to settle in the southern Turkey like other German citizens do when they retire.
By the way, no one in Germany is happy with the new government. I came across a lot of people who think that Merkel was a better chancellor. Germans are also concerned about a major, Europe-wide conflict that might arise from the Russo-Ukrainian war.
Perhaps, you will not be able to draw a definite conclusion from what I have said above, but it would also not be fair to make a sweeping statement that Germany envies us.