With the economy in deadlock and the unemployment rate soaring amid the coronavirus pandemic, the devaluation of the Turkish lira (TL) remains one of the most pressing problems facing Turkey’s economic outlook.
Garo Paylan, Peoples’ Democratic Party’s (HDP) MP for Istanbul, commented on the economic policies of the government in Turkey. He said the ruling coalition, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), is in deadlock regarding the inflation, exchange and interest rates.
“There is an economy of corruption favouring the ruling parties’ partisans and enriching the upper one percent elites of the country. Citizens will be crushed by the inflation as long as the one-man regime continues”, said Paylan.
‘Kurdistan is a colonised territory’
“Kurdistan is a colonised territory, the resources of which have been exploited financially over the course of the century”, said Paylan. “The ruling power’s purpose is to deepen economic exploitation. It exploits Kurdistan territory to that end”.
Paylan added that parts of Kurdistan are at a standstill due to the lack of investment in education and health.
Over 250 billion TL to be spent on military
“A significant proportion of 2021’s budget is being put aside for palaces, wars and partisans”, said Paylan. “The Justice and Development Party (AKP) has established an economy that works in its favour. For that reason, they deepen the security policies further”, Paylan said. “Over 250 billion TL from the 2021 budget will be spend on security. If you focus on war policies, your resources will be spent on S-400s, tanks, artillery, and rockets”.
Paylan noted that if the Turkish government only stopped implementing war policies and instead strengthened peace policies, “then the money can be spent helping unemployed teachers to find employment, or it can be used for retired citizens, for student debts and for the removal of the taxes on citizens surviving on the minimum wage.
“If we strengthen peace policies, our economic demands will be met, and welfare will be ensured as well. The war policies led us to lose our tranquility, as well as our people and our welfare. The poverty and deprivation of our citizens will continue as long as the budget is spent according to policies of war”, said Paylan.