Notes on post-July 15 Turkey

Published 11.08.2016 22:57

We have begun getting the first indicators, and even the results, of a new era in Turkey. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's visit to Russia a couple of days ago was of historic significance. Turkey and Russia decided to construct two lines for the Turkish Stream pipeline project, which will be one of the most important northern energy routes to carry Russian natural gas to the European market. Certainly, it was significant that Turkey-Russia rapprochement took place after the attempted coup of July 15 and that Air Force elements, which were implicated in the attempted coup, also had a part in the downing of a Russian fighter jet in November 2015. Moreover, it is hotly debated in Turkey that there is a connection between the attempted coup and Turkey's rapprochement with Russia and Israel.

In addition, the Yenikapı rally, where nearly 5 million people joined and opposition leaders delivered speeches, cemented Erdoğan's power and the political stability that is based on this power. The rally was the most important development in terms of positive contributions to the economy and political stability after both the national unity was ensured inside the country and constructive messages were given in St. Petersburg. Following the Yenikapı demonstration and Erdoğan's Russia visit, the Western media has come to acknowledge Turkey's reality. Even partially, those who turned a blind eye to the July 15 carnage and tried to sling mud at the resisting public and presented the government's anti-coup and anti-Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) acts as antidemocratic developments, have come to see and express what has happened in Turkey.

Foreign exchange and interest rates have reached normal levels as the market has begun buying into these developments. It is obvious that the global powers that made FETÖ stage the attempted coup put extensive efforts into what would be published by the Western media after the attempted coup. We know that these efforts have been organized since the Gezi Park protests in 2013, masterminded by certain powers and intensified in the period that led to the July 15 plot. Now, they will temporarily admit that they sustained a defeat on July 15, and just like the clandestine supporters of this scheme in Turkey, they will try to make us forget that they are the true agents of the attempted coup, as well as its background and aftermath. So, they will localize the July 15 process by laying the blame on their proxy terrorist organization alone and present it as if it were Turkey's domestic problem. Indeed, this is an all-too-familiar withdrawal strategy. However, Turkey knows the global powers behind the July 15 attempted coup and their objectives. They pursue a war-based strategy of overcoming the crisis not only in Turkey, but also in the entire world.

I think their strategy on Turkey will be built on a longer-term and economy-based path from now on. I am sure that the next target of those who plotted the July 15 process since the Gezi Park protests is to curb Turkey's economic growth and make Turkey cease to be an investible and investment-capable (capable of exporting capital) country in strategic areas. Here, the most visible and the simplest act is to inflict political pressure on international credit rating agencies to downgrade Turkey's credit score. More profoundly, their first major step will be to escalate the terror in the country, as it has always been. To achieve this, their key strategy will be to use the media and academia, as well as to motive the state's economic regulatory institutions in an ideological and political way.

For some circles, it has become a tradition to exaggerate and distort Erdoğan's remarks on the economy. What Erdoğan says and wants to do in the economy has been very clear, especially after 2008. In fact, debates on interest rates and relevant issues such as inflation, lack of savings and the causes of foreign deficit must be addressed within this context. They have gone as far as to claim that Erdoğan dictates the banks' interest rates. If this claim is not driven by ignorance, it is disinformation, as Erdoğan upholds an open and fully competitive economy. He just suggests that banks need to act in line with market requirements in a competitive atmosphere. It is not something desirable to keep interest rates high in an artificial way in an oligopolistic market and reduce growth and welfare accordingly. This is just what Erdoğan wants to express. Erdoğan is the only politician who works to build the Turkish banking system on solid foundations and who has launched the most radical reforms to this end since 2002.

At no other time in history has the interest and appetite of global banks to invest in the Turkish banking sector risen as much as in Erdoğan's reign. Today, the Turkish finance system is one of the most dynamic and stable finance systems in the world and this has been achieved through reforms that have been consistently carried out since 2002. Turkey's reform process will increasingly continue from now on.

In parallel with the restoration of ties with Russia and Israel, Turkey will continue to contribute to political stability in the region and fight determinedly against terrorist organizations, especially DAESH, in the region. Certainly, the rise of peace in the Middle East will contribute to the stability and growth of the Turkish economy.

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