If you bring someone who does not know Turkey at all and ask them to make an assessment by looking at the data for the year 2023, without mentioning who is in power, but stating that elections were held in May, their first reaction would probably be as follows:
“What an interesting country Turkey turns out to be. It is amazing how the political party that was in power until the elections and the political party that came to power after the elections could implement such a opposite economic policy. So the economic policy implemented in Turkey changes so radically from party to party; interesting!”
After this assessment, if you said, “But the government did not change in Turkey in the May elections,” the other person would probably be dumbfounded!
But look, nothing is happening to us! Because we are inoculated, we are used to it; we do not find such radical transformations strange at all…
We are a country that has adopted the motto “Yesterday is yesterday, today is today”, which entered our political literature years ago.
Yesterday, before the election, we cited Surah Nas and lowered interest rates.
Today, that is, after the election, we almost forget about Surah Nas and raise the interest rate to 42.5 percent from 8.5 percent in February.
This is the year of two acts… A year of opposite choices.
And which one is wrong?
The policy implemented before the elections or the one being implemented now?
Someone who does not know Turkey at all would not know what to say in the face of such a U-turn, especially when this U-turn is made by the same political cadres, but fortunately, as I said, we are inoculated against such situations, we are experienced, we are used to it.
We applaud when they say interest rates will go down, and we applaud when they say the opposite!
And what would that foreigner who was asked to analyze the Turkish economy say about currency-protected deposits?
His first reaction would probably have been, “Did you come up with such a method?” even though he would have been polite and not say it openly.
Indexing the value of the national currency to another currency… He would be surprised.
Then he would see that the interest rate ceiling was lifted to make these accounts more attractive in the period leading up to the elections.
After the elections, measures were taken to reduce these accounts, which were finally understood to be a huge burden. Within this framework, the minimum interest rate requirement was completely abolished for TRY-denominated accounts, while the requirement was slightly relaxed for FX-denominated accounts.
That foreigner would probably leave Turkey thinking, “I looked at very few indicators, but I learned so much; it was good, it was good, Turkey was a good experience for me. I saw here in a few days what I would not have seen in any other country in the world”.
If I am able to write this article and you are able to read it, it means that we have somehow overcome 2023 together.
So how was 2023?
- First and foremost, the politicians who profited from the May elections…
- Those who took out loans at low-interest rates before the elections…
- Those who invested their savings in currency-protected deposits and made a lot of money due to the rapid rise in the exchange rate after the May elections…
- Those who chose the right stock in the stock market at the right time and made good profits…
- Intermediaries, retailers and shopkeepers who have the opportunity to reflect the increase in costs to their sales prices as it is, while complaining about inflation…
What about those who will want to forget 2023?
- First and foremost, those who experienced the earthquake disaster. Almost a year has passed, but the basic problems are still the same. Uninhabitable buildings have not even been demolished, let alone solving the housing problem. The wound continues to bleed, and for those left behind by the losses, it will bleed for the rest of their lives.
- Fixed-income earners, workers, civil servants and pensioners, remembered and saw off the year never in a good way so it wouldn’t be different for 2023.
- And the bleeding wound in economic terms; landlord-tenant disputes… This problem is not solved by putting a 25 percent limit on rent increases, and we have already seen that it is not solved. Both sides are right in their own way. The rental income of the house should be at a reasonable rate to the house price. When that reasonable rate comes into play, the rent increases incredibly. So the main problem is that housing prices are going up and up. But who caused such an increase in housing prices? Not the landlords, of course not. Why is the rent, which should be in line with the house price, high for tenants? Is it because incomes cannot be increased in line with house prices and rents? By the way, it is also a fact that some hide behind this ball of problems and ask for higher rents than they should, and those who keep the rent lower than it should be in various ways and exploit the fact that the courts make decisions too late.