Against economic coups - HATICE KARAHAN

Against economic coups

The damned junta attempt against our Turkey is going to be cursed tonight, marking its first birth and death week anniversary. No matter how much we curse or punish, it is not enough! In addition to this, we need to be moderate and fix the future -oriented damages of the disaster we escaped at the last minute. Yes, we prevented an anachronous disaster; yet, it is true that we will now have to struggle for a long while with what it left behind... In this context, it is going to be of critical importance to be on the front especially against the economic blows that follow.

You saw how the credit rating company, S&P, reduced Turkey's score without even batting an eye. The score that was already in a century-long hibernation under the investable level suddenly found itself at a lower level. Naturally we showed our reaction. Why so hasty, right? Was it so necessary to reduce Turkey's score without even stopping to take a breath?

On the other hand, it could have been thought that Turkey has really turned from the brink of a most extreme political risk and this was the best argument that could be used to reduce its score. The points I personally reached taking this into consideration are as follows:

1 – While S&P always resorted to an excuse and could not even be as “fast” as a tortoise to bring Turkey to the investable level in Turkey's – relatively – good days, it was so quick to reduce its score. Especially since the score was not investable anyway, what was the rush?

2 – Let's skip this one and consider that it has serious concerns. Immediately before, this country's government determined these concerns and promised the world public that it would eliminate them. Hence, couldn't S&P, which we assume has heard this echoed news loudly and clearly, try to wait a while and see what was going to happen?

The decision has been made

Let's say they (S&P) did not have patience, they got excited and could not wait. Then, at least S&P could have tried to quickly consult authorities. According to Deputy Prime Minister for Economy Mehmet Şimşek's statements, S&P's reply to the government's offer to have a meeting was, “No need; the decision has been made.” I believe, refusing to discuss the matter even out of politeness, is an indication why the company has given a subjective impression ...

It is already known for years that rating companies are problematic in terms of objective rating. With which country has Turkey, which is in a much better position than the macro state of so many countries in the recent period, with all its pros and cons, equaled with this action by S&P now? Answer: With Brazil, which I drew attention to in a column I wrote two weeks ago with the title “BRICS'in Başı ve Sonu” (The end and beginning of BRICS)! Even South Africa, which I mentioned in the same column, has a much better score than us. I will say “Have a heart!” and leave it at that.

What's important

A discussion of rightness and justice will go on and on, but we should say “what's happened has happened” and move on. S&P did not deem us worthy of investment anyway and what it did was to bury the score a little deeper than it already was. What's more important here is that two out of the three other musketeers are not influenced by this action. Because a blow to our investable score by Moody's and Fitch will have such a bad impact that we must protect it.

So in this context, despite how much we are upset by their rating, I believe that we need to accept this as reality and review the materials they use. What I mean is, we need to approach their perspective and minimize the risks related to their reasons…

Statements that found response

I believe we pacified part of the sudden damage that could occur with the impact of the swift economic stance taken in the first stage following the treacherous attempt. Yes, we had activity in the stock market, we continue to have activity and will see more activity, yet if the process is managed well, some digestion and regulation will follow as well. What's essential and raises a question for foreigners is what will happen in the mid and long term. There are two main parts to this that raise questions:

Will the political risks continue? Will the reforms be made?

In relation to the second question, plenty of positive statements are made by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government; however, since the opposite party was not satisfied with the first part, it is unknown how effective this will be… Because both need to complement one another.

And now based on the political matter, the dominant opinion is: “We took care of our democracy; doesn't the world see this?” Okay, this is true. It was a matchless resistance and protection, we are proud. Yet, I am not sure that this national unity and power has found a response on the other side in terms of concerns. Hence, a severe political incident whose likelihood of happening was zero unfortunately created the impression that Turkey holds such a potential risk. When I saw international media on the bridge on Saturday morning making news with the tanks, the traitors had already disgraced the country to the world in one night!

The process shuld be explained well

Then this is one of the critical points. Approaching the world public with the emphasis that Turkey has nothing to do with being an anachronous country where military coups can take place and what happened is not the plan of the Turkish army, but the sly terrorist organization that infiltrated the military…

This way, the second emphasis should be launching the process of purging the military and all institutions of the organization in question, eliminating future-oriented risks.

We know that the steps taken are along this line, but this needs to be explained to the world this way, too, so we can speedily avoid being coded as an uncivilized country where the military can perpetrate coups as they wish.

In brief, our democracy and those who protect it are without a doubt powerful, yet what needs to be prioritized when calling out to the world is that the “threats” have eased.

There is much to do to re-establish confidence in the economy, but I have no more room left once again. I will continue.


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