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Turkey Letter: 1 April 2019

 

Domestic Politics:

  • TÜSİAD Statement on Turkey’s Municipal Elections: A New Period for Reforms in Turkey
  • A political quake in Turkey as Erdogan’s party loses in his home base of support
  • Erdogan loses control of Ankara in Turkish elections
  • Stunning setbacks in Turkey’s elections dent Erdogan’s aura of invincibility
  • Erdogan fights to fold Turkey’s cities in bitter election battles
  • Erdogan’s real test comes Monday when election calendar clears
  • Grocery stores are at the frontline of Turkey’s latest political battle

Foreign Policy:

  • S. halts F-35 equipment to Turkey, protests its plans to buy from Russia
  • Turkey stands by Russia missile deal as U.S. opposition stiffens
  • Turkish trial of U.S. consular employee highlights rift in relations
  • Turkey strongly condemns U.S. decision on Golan Heights

Economy & Energy:

  • Turkish assets seen in limbo as Erdogan loses key cities in vote
  • Lira swings as Erdogan suffers blow in Turkey’s municipal ballot
  • No-deal Brexit will hit eastern Europe, Turkey trade: EBRD
  • Erdogan says Turkey has to cut interest rates to fight inflation
  • Turkey’s stocks fall most since July 2016 amid lira volatility
  • Trapped investors prevent lira slide before Turkish elections
  • Central bank rescues Turkish lira but policy questions remain
  • Turkey to investigate JPMorgan over charges it ‘caused volatility’ in the markets


Domestic Politics

 

TÜSİAD Statement on Turkey’s Municipal Elections: A New Period for Reforms in Turkey
We congratulate the incoming mayors and wish them success in their terms in office, focused on quality of life, smart city technologies and sustainable development goals. Now that the municipal elections have been completed, the time ahead of us free from elections and political campaigning is an important opportunity for economic, social and political reforms.
TÜSİAD, TÜSİAD Statement on Turkey’s Municipal Elections: A New Period for Reforms in Turkey, 1 April 2019


A political quake in Turkey as Erdogan’s party loses in his home base of support
Step by step over the years, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey sought to ensure nobody could challenge him. He marginalized adversaries. He purged the army, the police and the courts. He cowed the press. He strengthened his powers in the Constitution. And he promised Turks a bright economic future.
The New York Times, A political quake in Turkey as Erdogan’s party loses in his home base of support, 1 April 2019


Erdogan loses control of Ankara in Turkish elections
Turkey’s two largest cities appear to have slipped from President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s grasp. Erdoğan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) lost control of the capital Ankara in Sunday’s municipal elections but held off on conceding defeat in Istanbul, even though Turkey’s electoral council said Monday morning that the opposition is leading in the country’s most populous city.
Politico, Erdogan loses control of Ankara in Turkish elections, 1 April 2019


Stunning setbacks in Turkey’s elections dent Erdogan’s aura of invincibility
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan faced the prospect Monday of a stinging electoral defeat in Istanbul, the city whose politics he dominated for a quarter of a century, with poll results showing what appeared to be an opposition victory in the race for the city’s mayor. Members of Erdogan’s ruling party vowed to challenge the outcome.
The Washington Post, Stunning setbacks in Turkey’s elections dent Erdogan’s aura of invincibility, 1 April 2019


 Erdogan fights to fold Turkey’s cities in bitter election battlesLess than a year after Tayyip Erdogan celebrated election triumph with fireworks in Ankara, Turkey’s all-powerful leader faces the embarrassment of losing his capital in local polls marred by bitter campaign rhetoric and economic storm clouds.
Reuters, Erdogan fights to fold Turkey’s cities in bitter election battles, 29 March 2019


 Erdogan’s real test comes Monday when election calendar clears
Regardless of how this Sunday’s municipal poll plays out, Turkey has arrived at a sobering period of reckoning. The Middle East’s biggest economy is entering a stretch of more than four years without a scheduled ballot, depriving Erdogan’s government of excuses for any future policy errors after more than a decade of pursing growth at all costs.
Bloomberg, Erdogan’s real test comes Monday when election calendar clears, 29 March 2019



Economy & Energy

 

Turkish assets seen in limbo as Erdogan loses key cities in vote
Turkey’s financial markets look to be headed for a rough ride after early results of local voting showed it may be the first time since 1994 that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan or an affiliated party have lost support from the nation’s largest city, investors and analysts say.
Bloomberg, Turkish assets seen in limbo as Erdogan loses key cities in vote, 1 April 2019


Lira swings as Erdogan suffers blow in Turkey’s municipal ballot
The lira swung between gains and losses as Turkey’s main opposition moved ahead of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s ruling AK Party in a closely fought contest for the nation’s largest metropolis after local elections loosened his grip on the nation’s key cities.
Bloomberg, Lira swings as Erdogan suffers blow in Turkey’s municipal ballot, 31 March 2019


No-deal Brexit will hit eastern Europe, Turkey trade: EBRD
Trade in a host of Europe’s emerging economies and nearby Turkey will be hit if Britain crashes out of the European Union without a transition deal in place, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development said on Friday.
Reuters, No-deal Brexit will hit eastern Europe, Turkey trade: EBRD, 29 March 2019


Turkey’s stocks fall most since July 2016 amid lira volatility
Turkish stocks tumbled on Wednesday, with the benchmark BIST 100 suffering its biggest one-day drop since July 2016 and almost erasing all of its 2019 gains, as renewed volatility in the lira is prompting equity investors to sell ahead of Sunday’s local elections.
Bloomberg, Turkey’s stocks fall most since July 2016 amid lira volatility, 27 March 2019


Trapped investors prevent lira slide before Turkish elections
Turkey has made it virtually impossible for foreign investors to sell the lira, averting a currency slide that could deal a blow to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan before local elections this weekend.
Bloomberg, Trapped investors prevent lira slide before Turkish elections, 26 March 2019


Central bank rescues Turkish lira but policy questions remain
The Turkish lira firmed again on Tuesday in volatile trade, as a series of tweaks by the central bank succeeded in clawing back most of last week’s steep losses, even while expectations dimmed for interest-rate cuts in the months ahead.
Reuters, Central bank rescues Turkish lira but policy questions remain, 26 March 2019


Turkey to investigate JPMorgan over charges it ‘caused volatility’ in the markets
Turkey’s banking regulator has announced that it will begin an inquiry into JPMorgan Chase for providing “misleading and manipulative” investment advice that, it said, prompted a run on the Turkish lira last week.
The New York Times, Turkey to investigate JPMorgan over charges it ‘caused volatility’ in the markets, 25 March 2019



Foreign Policy

 

U.S. halts F-35 equipment to Turkey, protests its plans to buy from Russia
The United States has halted delivery of equipment related to the stealthy F-35 fighter aircraft to Turkey, marking the first concrete U.S. step to block delivery of the jet to the NATO ally in light of Ankara’s planned purchase of a Russian missile defense system.
Reuters, U.S. halts F-35 equipment to Turkey, protests its plans to buy from Russia, 1 April 2019


Turkey stands by Russia missile deal as U.S. opposition stiffens
Turkey remains committed to purchasing the advanced S-400 missile system from Russia for its own defense, the foreign minister said on Friday, condemning U.S. efforts to halt the deal.
Bloomberg, Turkey stands by Russia missile deal as U.S. opposition stiffens, 29 March 2019


Turkish trial of U.S. consular employee highlights rift in relations
An Istanbul courtroom opened a window on the state of American-Turkish relations as Metin Topuz, a Turkish employee of the United States Consulate in Istanbul, went on trial in one of several cases that showcase American powerlessness in the face of the intransigence of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
The New York Times, Turkish trial of U.S. consular employee highlights rift in relations, 28 March 2019


Turkey strongly condemns U.S. decision on Golan Heights
Turkey strongly condemned the United States’ recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights and called it a grave violation of international law, the foreign ministry said on Monday.
Reuters, Turkey strongly condemns U.S. decision on Golan Heights, 25 March 2019