Turkey Turmoil Sends Desperation, Inflation Soaring…

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Mr. Erdogan and other Turkish officials have insisted that the fluctuations in the lira are temporary and are part of a longer-term strategy to encourage exports and transform the Turkish economy to one focused on productive industry. Mr. Erdogan also has blamed the crisis on unspecified foreign interference, and officials from the president’s party have also called on Turks to eat less, sacrificing for the good of the country.

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“What you call currency rates rise today and fall tomorrow,” said Mr. Erdogan on Dec. 1. “What you call inflation rises today and falls tomorrow. Production and employment is permanent.” The president’s office didn’t respond to a request for comment.

The country has suffered debt and currency calamities in the last few years, but the current crisis differs from past ones because no one remains in the government to oppose Mr. Erdogan’s unorthodox policies—including cutting interest rates despite high inflation.

Former Finance Minister Lutfi Elvan, seen by officials and analysts as the last voice of mainstream economics in the cabinet, resigned Thursday and was replaced with an Erdogan loyalist.



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