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Feb 5, 2023

Turkey Between the Achievements of the Present and the Challenges of the Future

Turkey is a member of the G-20, whose economies make up 85 percent of the world economy. Turkey’s economy ranks 13th globally, and sixth in Europe, and is rapidly moving closer to the G-10.

What distinguishes Turkish economy and makes its progress? What are its strengths and achievements? What makes many experts and investors continue to bet on its growth despite all the difficulties that the country is going through recently?

To answer the previous questions and get a deeper understanding as readers, researchers, investors and applicants of Turkish citizenship, the following points should be presented.

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History of Turkey

The modern Turkish Republic was founded in 1923 on the ruins of the Ottoman Empire with the efforts of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, who became the president, advancing fundamental social, political, economic and linguistic changes.

The democratic era in Turkey began in 1946 to prevent the continuation of military coups which began in 1960 and ended with the last coup in 1980.

The period of coups and its aftermath was marked by a significant economic deterioration, with inflation reaching 100 percent in 1971 and the government resorted to austerity programs. According to the World Bank, 67 percent of the Turkish state’s income was wasted in 2003.

Amid the great resentment of the people and many civic elites, the change which began in 2002 was essential as rational governments took over as a contribution to the Turkish state’s access to today’s good reputation and a promising future.

Rectifiers and tools for change:

Based on the availability of a set of components and tools, Turkey has been able to make a big difference from what it was in the nineties of the last century.

Land and natural resources:

The presence of international and local rivers, high rainfall rates and very rich agricultural wealth, where Turkey ranks first in the world in terms of the number of agricultural crops, in addition to the presence of riches, huge animal and fish resources and underground resources are represented by 60 minerals on top: vines, iron, lead, copper, coal and limited oil reserves in the southeast.

Turkey has a very important geopolitical position as it is located in the continents of the ancient  world Asia and Europe, controlled by two strategic Straits: the Bosphorus Strait north between the Black Sea and the Sea of ​​Marmara, and “Dardanelles Strait” southward, between the Marmara Sea and the Mediterranean Sea through the Aegean Sea.

Turkey’s important location has made it an inevitable energy link, located near more than 70% of the world’s proven primary energy reserves, while the largest energy consumer, Europe, is adjacent to Turkey.

-Enjoy a mild climate that facilitates international navigation by sea, air and vast coastal borders of 7,200 km.

-Owning great tourist importance to its natural beauty, and its striking effects in the depth of history.

Powers provide labor and capital:

The total population of Turkey reached 82.3882 people in 2018 according to the Turkish Statistical Institution. According to them, the proportion of young people aged 15 to 24 in 2017 was 12,983,97. About 16.1 percent of the total population was young at the time, demonstrating the mjority of Turkish society, according to Anatolia. The number of labor force reached 31.6 million in 2017, making Turkey the third largest labor market in Europe. In terms of growth rate, Turkey has the second rate after Europe and in terms studies and skills it is ranked after Germany.

Actions taken with the aim of change and development:

The above-mentioned important elements cannot have any influence on the society without the actions of a wise and faithful administration. Since 2002, the country has chosen such an administration. The most important actions taken by the administration were:

Fighting corruption, tax evasion, banning unregistered trade, controlling resources waste, stabilizing state income by promoting the concept of separation of powers, imposing an effective regulatory system and promoting private insurance.

-Fighting inflation. The government controlled the inflation and cut off the zeros of Turkish lira on January 1, 2005.

-Supporting investment and investors by facilitating the establishment of companies and transactions and the issuance of obtaining Turkish citizenship law through real estate investment. The trend of privatization has risen from $ 8.1 billion to $ 58.9 billion. To support businessmen, social security benefits have been cut by 25 percent, and bank interest rates have been cut consequently the investors were encouraged to get bank loans.

-Integrate into the global economy and enter into serious negotiations to join the European Union.

-The adoption of an active foreign policy with the Arab and Islamic countries and the countries of the South Caucasus and Central Asia, which reflected positively on the economy.

- Adopt a responsible policy that puts the economic interests of the state over partisan interests by forging friendly relations with long-established and giant companies such as Kog and Dogan, managed by members of opposition parties such as the CHP. The aim is to encourage these companies to expand, increase production and thus contribute the growth of the economy.

-Export subsidies and exporting companies with legislations such as the legislation issued in 2010 to support export companies financially up to $ 250 thousand per year. In addition to providing free economic feasibility studies for the targeted foreign markets, providing training courses, and supporting farmers and the agricultural sector.

-Developing the Istanbul Stock Exchange and the financial markets structurally and as methods of work, and the protection of its shareholders, to promote them and encourage work in them.

-Attention to human resources through improving the quality of education and the establishment of more universities, as the number of Turkish universities reached 206 in 2018.

Achievements of the Turkish Economy

As a result of the above actions and policies and based on the solid foundations of the Turkish economy, it has gained important achievements and has been placed it in the forefront of the world’s economies today. The achievements are as follows:

-Turkey’s GDP, the most important indicator of the economy’s assessment, reached $ 851 billionin 2017.This GDP was only $ 232 billion in 2002.It is estimated that this basic index will increase by 105 percent between 2002 and 2015. According to a World Bank Fund report on GDP per capita in countries with a population of more than 50 million, Turkey came in the ninth rank after Russia.

-Turkey’s economic growth rate in 2017 was 7.4 percent, according to the Turkish Statistical Institution. Turkey topped the G20, surpassing China, which grew 6.8 percent in the same year.

Turkish exports in 2018 rose to $ 168.1 billion, the highest annual level of exports in the history of the Republic. In January 2019, the value of exports reached $ 13.170 billion, an increase of 5.9% compared to the month. Turkey’s exports in 2017 amounted to $ 144 billion, a large part of which came from the automotive sector.

This year, Turkey produced more than one and a half million cars, including Renault, Toyota and Peugeot cars, most of which were exported to various countries. 75% were European countries. Turkey exported 1781 varieties of agricultural products to more than 190 countries in 2016.

Turkey is currently the first European and seventh in the world in terms of agriultural production. It is the world’s largest producer of figs, cherries and apricots, and 70 percent of the world’s pistachios come from Turkey.

-Turkey ranks sixth in the world of tourism. Last year, the number of tourists reached 43 million, an increase of 23% compared to the previous year. Turkey’s tourism revenues in 2018 exceeded $ 29.6 billion, up from 12.3 percent a year earlier.

-The share of public debt has fallen from 74 percent of GDP to 33 percent of GDP in 2017, and since 2004 has met the “criteria set by the EU’s Maastricht Agreement, which imposes a maximum of 60 percent” of public debt. Similarly, the budget deficit in 2003-2016 decreased from more than 10 percent to less than 2 percent of GDP, meeting one of the criteria of the EU’s Maastricht Convention on the General Budget.

-Central Bank reserves doubled: Central Bank reserves doubled from $ 26.8 billion in 2002 to $ 95.40 billion in October 2017.

-Foreign direct investment amounted to $ 180 billion in the last 14 years, during which time the United Arab Emirates topped the list of investors from Arab countries, while Saudi Arabia had the lion’s share in real estate investments as the first or second buyers of Turkish real estate It comes in the official periodic reports on the purchase of Turkish property.

-According to the 2018 Global Firearms Index of the World’s Strongest Armies, the Turkish army ranks ninth in the world and third in Europe, with a well-developed domestic military industry and export of about $ 1.8 billion to Asian and European countries.

There has been a major shift in the level of national infrastructure from suspension bridges to giant tunnels to metro, metro bus, tramway and highways. Buses and metro buses manufactured by the Turkish company “Busan Kaya” today roam the streets of Germany, Thailand and other countries.

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