President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan has completed 14 national and local elections during his 17 year rule thus far. This makes him the longest-standing leader in the 95-year old republic. During his time as Prime Minister of Turkey he encountered a large amount of criticism from his opposing parties for his reforms both inside and out of his country. Despite this, he did not lose his followers and support from the general public. In addition to this, since he is a conservative leader and a person that did not come from means (part of the nations people), he was able to gain support from the public.
As a result, he was able to become the first president elected by popular vote.
Erdogans most ambitious area is undoubtedly the economy. During the earlier years of his rule, he accelerated the privatization of property, opened doors to foreign investment, and increased Turkeys abundance of liquidity in the world market, which has made Turkey an increasingly attractive investment center.
After the Turkish lira was revalued by removing six zeroes from the currency due to the high inflation, much changed in the country. The fast pace of the construction industry and the large amount of privatization filled the pocked of the country and the citizens themselves. Erdogan also made many promises during his time of power thus far. One of his first promises was to stop receiving loans from the IMF. In 2013, he repaid the last installment of debt to the IMF and followed up on his promise.
Another one of Erdogans promises was to remove the bureaucratic obstacles to investing and this is exactly what he did. The construction sector became the rising star of the Erdogan era. After several years, inflation went down to single digits. Thus, Turkeys image of being the inflation monster was no longer true, rather, the image became inflation destroyer. How did this happen? AKP and the president Erdogan quickly after coming to power sold many of the national treasures that our country accumulated over the 95 year of tenure.Here are some examples of some of the more important things that they sold after coming to power:
Seka Bal?kesir ??letmesi (2003), Taksan Tezgah Sanayi (2003), Petkim Standart Kimya ?irketi (2003), S?merbank Nazilli Fabrikas? (2003), Ku?adas? Liman? (2003), TCDD ?zmir Liman? (2003), EBK Manisa Et-Tavuk Kombinas? (2004), ET? Bak?r ??letmeleri (2004), TEKEL Sekili Tuzlas? (2004), Bursa Gaz (2004), ET? Elektrometalurji (2004), S?mer Holding Bak?rk?y ??letmesi (2004), K?tahya ?eker Fabrikas? (2004), ET? G?m?? (2004), S?merbank Diyarbak?r ??letmesi (2004), T?GSA? Gemlik G?bre Sanayi (2004), TEKEL Alkoll? ??kiler Sanayi (2004), ESGAZ (2004), ET? Krom (2004), T?mosan T?rk Motor Sanayi (2004), ?GSA? (?stanbul G?bre Sanayi) (2004), S?merbank Beykoz Deri ve Kundura (2005), SEKA ?zmit ??letmeleri (2005), ET? Seydi?ehir Al?minyum (2005), T?rk Telekom (2005), Adapazar? ?eker Fabrikas? (2005), T?PRA? (2006), THYdeki kamu hisselerinin %51i (2006), ERDEM?R (2006), TCDD Derince Liman? (2007), Ara? Muayene ?stasyonlar? (2007), TCDD Mersin Liman? (2007), PETK?M (2008), TEKEL Sigara Sanayi ??letmeleri (2008), TCDD Band?rma ve Samsun Limanlar? (2008), Ba?kent Elektrik Da??t?m (2009), 6 ?eker Fabrikas? (2009), 6 B?lgenin Elektrik Da??t?m ?irketi (2010), 31 Akarsu Santrali (2011), ?skenderun Liman? (2011), 19 B?lgenin Elektrik Da??t?m ?irketi (2013)
Even though Erdogan stayed true to his promises and repaid the IMF in 2013 all the debt instalments it wasn’t enough to stop the turkish economy tanking damages and going straight into crisis. What this means is that even after selling the national treasures that the county accumulated over 95 years and all investments coming in from foreign business owners Erdogan couldnt construct a plan that will rise the turkish economy, he couldnt make an investment plan that will bring up and produce for the country so the economy went only downhill. Turkey in the past was a farmers country, what that means is that vegetables were coming from the inside but after Erdogan is on power that is vanishing, the reason for that is that Erdogan didnt have any good agricultural reforms that would save the agricultural life in Turkey. The agriculture in Turkey right now is dead, non-existent, Turkey is at the point where they need to import even the esenciales like onions.The price for onions is reaching ridiculous sums. For a while the price for even two pounds of onions is at minimum 5 Liras and can sometimes even go up to 12 Liras depending on the brand and place from were the onions were imported.
In 2017, 94 state-owned corporations and large-scale lands were sold to foreigners and private investors. However, the rise of economics in the Republic of Turkey was short-lived because there was an emergence of corruption and scandals such as the emergence of bribery December 17th – 24th of 2013, Fethullah Gulen and his community proclaiming a parallel government, and Gezi Park Protests. As a result of this, the fast-paced economic growth in Turkey slowed and nearly stopped. however, overall, various sources show that approximately hundreds millions of dollars were generated due to privatization by credit and stock exchanges.
In my opinion, during Erdogans power, this money was not used well and there was a large economic disruption in 2013. The previously obtained large sums of money and power in the Republic of Turkey was difficult to digest. I think that now, Turkey seems fragile. Economic uncertainties have increased since the number of the nations rulers, and after the coup, millions of citizens have fled the country to seek more stability. The growth of the economy in the early years of the AK Party Government does not mean success. In 2018, the public debt is now increasing and the economic well being of the public is decreasing because they are sinking in debt as the dollar strengthens and lira weakens. As a result, inflation will rise.
If Turkey is powerful today, it because of Erdogan and his political partys service. According to my point of view of Erdogans Turkey would be the following: if Turkeys political standing was a 90-minute soccer match, between years 2002-2008, they would be winning 10-0, however, with their current stance of not investing, bad politics, and loss of power and merit, they are losing 10-40. Their lack of change and reform currently is making them lose the game. The main reasons of this is the problems of the Turkish economy and this is a wound that will not stop bleeding. This economic crisis affects everything in the country today. The country’s borrowing resulted in deficits in both its fiscal and current accounts, and Turkey doesn’t have large enough reserves to rescue the economy when things go wrong, experts say. Making the situation worse for Turkey is President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s preference to keep interest rates low even though inflation is more than three times the central bank’s target When I moved to America 2 years ago, $1.00 was equal to 2.90 Turkish Liras. This August, the Lira lost 40% of its value and increased to $1.00 equaling 7.20 Turkish Liras. This loss of value caused thousands of businessmen and businesswomen to be bankrupt, thousands of citizens to lose jobs, and caused many people to struggle with survival.
As I said, Turkey lost merit and further caused this because Erdogan appointed his son-in-law, Berat Albayrak, Treasurer and Minister of Finance. This caused Turkey to have an untrustworthy and corrupt image. While America is dealing with researching Mars with NASA in 2018, Turkey 2018 is dealing with decreasing the price of onions by sending police officers to onion warehouses . Instead of trying to decrease the inflation, encourage the youth and small businesses, and create economic reforms, they are busy dealing with decreasing the price of onions.
Since the time AKP has power, the press has been oppressed and pressured. Turkey currently has the largest amount of reports in jail in the world. Turkey has over 150 reporters in jail and to make matters worse, more than 180 media outlets have been shut down and 2,500 journalists and other media workers have lost their jobs . This directly reflects the amount of freedom of speech. AKP and Erdogan are heavily criticized by the world for doing this and Erdogan claims that the reporters that are in jail are not reporters, rather that they are terrorists. In todays Turkey, whomever threatens his power and criticizes his decisions lives under the threat of being jailed and targeted by the government.
AK Party has lots of signs of projects in the past 16 years. A 150 year dream of Turkey has been to connect Europe and Asia to Turkey through undersea tunnels under the Marmara Sea. This project is called the Eurasia Tunnel and is an underwater road tunnel under the bosphorus sea. This project was a success and truly allowed for more circulation and communication between the European and Asian sides of Turkey. Another one of the projects AKP did was to introduce high-speed trains for the first time to the country to connect cities such as Ankara, Istanbul, and Izmir. The introduction of the high-speed train bettered the country and allowed for people to access more. During that time, they also created the third Bosphorus bridge. Additionally, they recently just opened one of the the largest airports in the world in Istanbul. This was a large step forward in the well-being of the country and will hopefully lead to economic growth by allowing for more foreign travelers. During the years 1923-2002, the Republic of Turkey could make only 6,100 Kilometers of split roads. In contrast to this, AKP was able to make 25,200 split roads in 15 years. Despite the mistakes, AKP has also been very good to the well-being of Turkey. However, because of his bad policies and leading the country in a bad direction, Erdogan is still not accepted and favored by the opposing parties and opposing citizens.
Sunni and Alaoutie are two main religious groups in Turkey. Sunni are more in numbers and more religious so the president Erdogan used that to his advantage to win them over so they could help him in his rise. During this process the people separated even more. Erdogan separated the religious group and also the other ethnic groups within the country: For example, the definition of what it is to be a Turk is a political categorisation, where the concept of being a Turkish Muslim, until recently, was devoid of religious content. This is rarely found elsewhere in the world, as the category of Muslim becomes ever more poignant in the light of local and global challenges. Moreover, what is understood by minority or majority is also somewhat of a complicated issue in the Turkish context Furthermore, not only in Turkey but all around the world strategists are worried that what is happening in Turkey right now can have big impact on the worlds economic system especially in Europe.”Turkish assets have been under severe pressure. While Turkey makes up a small percentage of the global economy and financial markets, investors are worried about the issues in Turkey causing damage in other markets around the world, particularly Europe” . But how did this happen to Turkey people may wonder? Here is an explanation to that question in best details.
Turkey has in recent years been one of the fastest-growing economies in the world, even outperforming economic giants China and India last year. In the second quarter of 2018, the country reported 7.22 percent growth in its gross domestic product.That expansion, however, was fueled by foreign-currency debt, analysts said. At a time when central banks around the world were pumping money to stimulate their economies after the global financial crisis, Turkish banks and companies were racking up debt denominated in U.S. dollars, they said .
While Erdogan was making good political decisions for the country he did a big mistake while trying to implement his politics in Syria. AKPs intentions in Syria became a nightmare. The results of their intentions and actions were reflected with millions of syrians moving to Turkey.
Despite these promising developments, enormous challenges remain. Polls such as the Syrians Barometer-2017 illustrate that among large segments of the Turkish public, Syrian refugees are resented. They are viewed as a burden, and blamed for deteriorating public services, price increases, and rising unemployment. Although the Turkish government has emphasized cultural and religious affinities with Syrian refugees, the public perceives a surprisingly large cultural and social distance. There are consistent reports of tension between refugees and locals. This makes it difficult for the Turkish government to be forward-leaning on a strategy for integration that acknowledges Syrians are not likely to go home any time soon. Turkeys president, Recep Tayyip Erdo?an, recently justified Turkeys military intervention into northern Syria by advocating that its aim was, in part, to help return Syrian refugees to their homes. He added: they will not stay forever here
Since AK Party have gotten the power in the country they served turkish people more than other governments that turkish people witnessed. Being powerful and serving people make them win all the elections they run and despite some ups and downs Recep Tayyip Erdogan never lost his followers. However, during the earlier years, AK Party was everyones favorite because of the deeds that they did helping people having easier life, but after a while they started to hurt people more than help them so the main dilemma that people have is should they still support them because of the good things they did when they started. Is that enough to keep them going or should they be changed? Being a patriotic turkish person who desires to be a future politician and serve his people, I think he should balance the relations between opposite communities in Turkey and solve the economics crises by listening and taking in consideration some of the advices the experts give him instead of going and doing everything on his hand.