Economy

High interest rates not a top priority issue, says Turkey's new finance minister

Turkey has set off on path of complete economic independence, says Nureddin Nebati

Gokhan Ergocun   | 02.12.2021
High interest rates not a top priority issue, says Turkey's new finance minister

ISTANBUL

The country’s high interest rates are not a top priority issue, Turkey’s new finance minister said on Thursday.

Nureddin Nebati, who took over as the treasury and finance minister from Lutfi Elvan, said his focus will be on addressing “chronic problems” plaguing Turkey’s economy.

“Our top priority will not be high interest rates. We want to boost investments, production and exports, completely eliminate chronic problems such as current account deficit and foreign debt, and increase employment and wages,” Nebati said at a handover ceremony in the capital Ankara.

“Also among our priorities is protecting fixed income groups and pensioners from the impact of inflation, and taking measures to meet the needs of the business world quickly and proactively.”

Turkey, he added, has set off on a path of complete economic independence.

“We will be transparent and take steps for a stable market and economy,” asserted Nebati, who was the deputy minister of treasury and finance under Elvan.

Elvan, who held the post for a little over a year before stepping down early on Thursday, said he had taken steps to increase stability and create an environment of trust in the economy.

Apart from the COVID-19 support measures, the ministry never wavered on fiscal discipline, he stressed.

“At the end of this year, we expect a budget deficit of around 2%, and we are also hopeful of a budget surplus, excluding interest,” Elvan added.

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