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13 Aug, 2018 00:36

Turkey blames Trump for attack on lira, says it won’t ‘kneel’ and has counter-measures ready

Turkey blames Trump for attack on lira, says it won’t ‘kneel’ and has counter-measures ready

Turkey has accused Donald Trump of leading an attack on its national currency. The lira lost about 40 percent of its value against the US dollar this year and, to reduce its volatility, Ankara has prepared an urgent action plan.

“The currency of our country is targeted directly by the US president,” Finance Minister Berat Albayrak told Hurriyet. “This attack, initiated by the biggest player in the global financial system, reveals a similar situation in all developing countries.”

The Turkish lira took a massive hit against the dollar on Friday following Trump’s decision to double tariffs on aluminum and steel imports from Turkey to 20 percent and 50 percent. Overall, the national currency lost roughly about 40 percent of its value this year.

To calm down the markets, the government instructed its institutions to implement a series of actions on Monday. “All of our action plan and measures are ready,” Albayrak said, without elaborating.

“Together with our banks, we prepared our action plan regarding the situation with our real sector companies, including Small and Medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which is the sector that is affected by the fluctuation the most,” the minister said. “Together with our banks and the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BRSA), we will take the necessary measures quickly.”

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan meanwhile slammed the US decision to impose new tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

“It is making an operation against Turkey… Its aim is to force Turkey to surrender in every field from finance to politics, to make Turkey and the Turkish nation kneel down,” Erdogan said in Trabzon on Sunday. “We have seen your play and we challenge you.”

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