By Satuk Bugra Kutlugun and Sena Guler
Vowing to turn the country into a high-income nation, Turkey’s president on Thursday released the election manifesto of the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party for the June 24 elections.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan unveiled the election manifesto, titled "Strong Parliament, Strong Government, Strong Turkey," at the Ankara Arena in the capital.
"Turkey's new aim is to be among high-income countries," he said, adding that with the initiatives taken over the last 16 years of AK Party rule, Turkey had climbed to the upper-middle income group.
"Turkey will not only be self-sufficient in the defense industry, but also it will become one of the leading exporting countries," he said.
He added Turkey will improve its organizational capability with its local and national technological infrastructure in the cyber industry.
"We will boost women's labor force participation rate to over 40 percent by the end of 2023," he added.
Erdogan also said the AK Party will reach a high, sustainable economy along with an increase in Turkey's share of the world economy to 1.5 percent.
Stating that Turkey plays an important role in voicing the problems and expectations of developing countries, he added: “We will strengthen our economic and political ties with various regional structures, especially the EU.
“We want all brotherly nations in our region and the world to reach better welfare, together with our nation.”
He said they would take necessary steps towards this and strengthen cooperation.
Fighting crime and terrorism
Erdogan said more effective methods will be developed to combat organized crime, cyber-crime, and drug smuggling.
“We will continue our fight against terror without any interruption,” he said.
Also stating that they would direct all resources to boost the quality of education in the new era, he pledged important reforms in every field of education.
Erdogan also said that they would support movies and TV series, touting their important role in introducing Turkish culture to the world.
He added that they would continue to support young people in every area, from employment to sports.
“We have come a long way in bringing our women to the positions they deserve. We will continue to increase women’s participation in every area, from politics to bureaucracy, culture to art, and to non-governmental activities,” he said.
Erdogan also touted new projects to solve the problems of the Turks living abroad and their children.
Science and technology
On their aims in science, Erdogan said they will lift science, technology, and research and development efforts to a new level.
He further pledged Turkey would set up a new scientific base in Antarctica in 2019.
Antarctica has served as a scientific research zone since a 1959 treaty, signed by Turkey.
Turkey's first polar research center, Istanbul Technical University’s Polar Research Center, was founded in Antarctica in 2015.
The center's mission is to carry out research on Antarctica and raise Turkey's profile in the international scientific community.