Monday, 20 August, 2018

Turkish Currency Collapses After Trump Doubles Metals Tariffs

Berat Albayrak Turkish Finance Minister Berat Albayrak is to unveil the plan for Turkey's economy on Friday
Orlando Vargas | 12 August, 2018, 16:16

On Friday, Turkey's currency, the Lira, fell as much as 14%, causing the global financial markets to shudder.

World stock markets fell Friday, particularly in Europe, as investors anxious about the financial stability of Turkey, where the currency has nosedived.

Turkey also warned there would be retaliation against the US' imposition of the tariffs.

This year, it lost more than 40 per cent.

President Donald Trump said in a tweet Friday that he would hit Turkey with additional tariffs, as their national currency continues to drop. What possible reason could there be behind the lira, which was at 2.8 against dollar on July 15, 2016, to slide below 6 yesterday?

Erdogan urged Washington to give up the misguided notion that bilateral relations could be "asymmetrical" and realise that Turkey had alternatives "before it is too late".

An important emerging market, Turkey borders Iran, Iraq and Syria and has been mostly pro-Western for decades. Financial upheaval there risks further destabilising an already volatile region.

He wrote and Washington's unilateral actions against Turkey undermine American interests and force Ankara to search for new allies.

The Turkish lira on Friday hit a record low following President Donald Trump's announcement he was doubling United States tariffs on Turkish metals.

Trump tweeted Friday that the U.S. -Turkey ties "are not good at this time!".

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United States to Increase Tariffs on Turkish Aluminum, Steel
But the trade minister, Ruhsar Pekcan, said: "We implore President Trump to return to the negotiating table". The arrest of USA pastor Brunson since October 2016 has soured already delicate relations with Washington.


Jackson said the weakness of the lira would boost competitiveness for Turkey's exports, but the tariffs on steel and aluminum would offset that.

Although he downplayed the Dollar's strength, he once again summoned God to be on the Turkish side against the US.

The new tariffs announced on Friday come as the USA increases pressure for the release of American pastor Andrew Brunson, who has been in Turkish custody since 2016 on charges of espionage.

"The United States slapped sanctions on two Turkish officials earlier this month over a detained American pastor who is being tried on espionage and terror-related charges".

In retaliation, Turkey imposed additional tariffs worth 266.5 million USA dollars on US goods in June.

In addition, foreign investors are disquieted by Erdogan's authoritarian government, which seems to be pursuing imprudent and politically charged economic policies which undercut the independence of the central bank - only worsening Turkey's economic predicament. "Because this is the language they understand", he said. "You prefer a pastor to a strategic ally of yours in North Atlantic Treaty Organisation".

Brunson was indicted for allegedly having links with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party and Fethullah Gulen, an exiled Turkish preacher who has allegedly masterminded the failed coup attempt in 2016 to topple Erdogan.

Turkey came in sixth place among the countries the U.S. imported steel from past year, while Turkish steel's share was 7 percent of total U.S. steel imports.

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif waded into the mounting row by accusing Washington of having an "addiction to sanctions and bullying".

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