This week, as we marked the first anniversary the Gülenist Terror Group's (FETÖ) failed July 15 coup attempt thanks to our people's heroic resistance, we need to emphasize the strong link between the current stage of the Turkish economy and the bravery and valor of the Turkish public.
Turkey has survived a lot of predicaments in its recent history from the War of Independence to a coup attempt on July 15, 2016. It has persistently overcome these dilemmas with the determination to further improve its democracy and economy.
The Cold War period that emerged after World War II, both impeded the growth of the world economy and slowed down the development process of democracy on a global scale. The Cold War accompanied problematic structures in which civil and military bureaucracy gained too much strength and elected governments often had to overcome this bureaucracy in the political structures that had to be based on national will.
In the aftermath of the Cold War, countries put forth an intensive effort to make processes that would highlight the national will and enable people to fully participate in democracy with economic and democratic reforms.
As the reforms accelerated, a process in which the bureaucracy resisted, to avoid losing power, emerged. This situation also delayed the formation of a private sector-oriented structure in the Turkish economy in which small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) would come to the fore.
During the Cold War period, Turkish democracy faced interruptions every 10 years due to coups. The problems with political stability negatively affected the development of the Turkish economy.
When it came to the early 1980s, we had an economy that exported just $3 billion in products to the world. It was an economy that had fewer beds in the tourism sector than the small U.S. state of Rhode Island and 65 percent of that was dominated by the public sector.
The 1994 and 2001 economic crises caused the per capita income, which had risen to $3,000 as a result of ceaseless efforts, to twice drop to $2,000. And throughout the 1990s, Turkey experienced a period in which it lost its economic and political self-confidence.
The bar has been brought to a higher point with reforms that have been launched over the past 15 years in which the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) has been in power. And the leap in Turkey's global perspective has enabled us to re-achieve our self-confidence in economy and politics.Attack on market economy success
With democratic and economic reforms that have been actualized since the early 2000s, Turkey has become an "influential' member of many international platforms that have directed the world economy and politics." The bravery and valor of the Turkish people is reflected in their economic entrepreneurship. Private sector investments and the revolutionary transformation and the institutionalization of Anatolian SMEs have made a great contribution to the high growth rate achieved over the past 15 years. All the provinces in Turkey have come to a point where they are able to carry out exports.
This indisputable success, which has been confirmed on an international level as well, has accompanied a major transformation in terms of the establishment of an economic structure based on a competitive market economy dominated by the private sector. This has reinforced the self-confidence of Turkish people and enabled the Turkish business community to make significant business connections and investments in a self-assured manner all around the world.
Turkey has gained the place it deserved among the important players of the global economic system. The treacherous coup attempt on July 15 last year was a brutal attack not only against Turkey's democracy, but also against its success in the economy. This attack was repelled by the great heroism of our people and the strong infrastructure of the Turkish economy.
The basic fact ignored by the masterminds of this treachery was that the Turkish public, which embraces their democracy and economy with consolidated self-confidence, would display heroism and clearly show that they are the true owners of this country.
Today, Turkish people dominate 75 percent of the Turkish economy, produce three times more added value than 15 years ago and carry out $150 billion in exports. With the awareness that the democracy they have strengthened is the only hope for transformation in Eurasia, Turkish people, young and old alike, and from all walks of life, poured on to the streets and stopped tanks and fighter jets with their faith and the indisputable power of the national will. They staged an unprecedented epic of world politics and a struggle to embrace democracy.
Thanks to the success achieved in the market economy and the sustainable macroeconomic equilibrium, our economy managed to make up for the treachery, which many leading economies could not have overcame, and return to a strong growth trend.
July 15 was not only a night of victory for Turkey's democracy and economy, but also a milestone for Eurasia's destiny. The ongoing conflict between the Atlantic and the Asia-Pacific and low-intensity tensions have made Turkey a key country. Turkey, which hosted the World Petroleum Congress after the World Energy Congress, riveted its global and regional position as ‘"thee silk road of energy."
After the July 15 victory, we will continue to carefully watch the strong role that Turkey will continue to undertake in the next 10 years, as a country that is further reinforcing its status as a playmaker in Eurasia.