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20 Dec, 2019 11:00

Turkey’s Erdogan urges Muslim countries to stop trading in ‘foreign currency’

Turkey’s Erdogan urges Muslim countries to stop trading in ‘foreign currency’

A crusader against the US dollar, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Muslim countries should switch to trading in their national currencies if they do not want to be hit by trade wars.

The financial markets of Muslim nations remain “fragile against shocks and manipulation” unless they have their own “payment systems,” Erdogan said at an Islam-themed conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on Thursday.

Trade in national currencies has gained urgency amid talks of trade wars… We should first of all put the issue of Islamic finance as well on our agenda.

The Turkish leader also proposed setting up a working group composed of financial experts to craft a “comprehensive” roadmap on how to advance interest-free finance.

Erdogan did not specifically mention the US dollar, but Ankara has had a falling out with the US in recent years. Washington has been trying to pressure Turkey into scrapping a deal to buy S-400 air defense missile systems from Russia, while some American politicians blasted Erdogan for launching a military operation against Kurdish forces in northern Syria. 

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Turkey refused to cancel the contract with Russia, and maintains that its offensive in Syria is directed against terrorists.

The Turkish president previously called on other countries to end the “monopoly” of the dollar in global trade, and said that America “behaves like wild wolves.” He also stated that using the greenback damages the Turkish economy.

Last month, Erdogan urged Turks to abandon the dollar in favor of the Turkish lira in hopes of strengthening the national currency.

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