Erdogan Urges Turkish Business Not to ‘Run to the Banks’ amidst US Economic War


Turkey’s President Erdogan has warned of drastic measures if companies withdraw money from banks amid the country’s current currency crisis sparked by US tariffs.

Speaking in the northeastern city of Trabzon, Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned entrepreneurs not to “rush to the banks to withdraw foreign currency.”

He added that companies should “know that keeping this nation alive and standing is not only our job but also the work of industrialists, merchants.

Turkey was hit by a financial shock this week as its currency price fell around 20% overnight as the result of US trade war measures and government economic policies.

During Sunday’s speech, Erdogan reiterated earlier allegations that the crisis was “an operation against our economy conducted through exchange rates” and that Turkey would prevail.

This comes as Erdogan said on Saturday that his country was ready to trade with allied nations using national currencies.

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“We are preparing to carry out trade in national currencies with China, Russia, Iran, Ukraine, which account for the bulk of bilateral trade. If European countries want to get rid of the pressure of the dollar, we are ready to create a similar system with them,” said the Turkish leader during a meeting in the Turkish city of Rize.

Speaking of his disagreement with Washington, Erdogan referred to it as a “currency plan,” saying that those who provoke fluctuations in the value of the lira “think they can destroy Turkey.

Still according to the head of state, Ankara does not intend to tolerate the situation of an economic war, especially as several other countries, such as Iran and China, are pressured by the threat of imposing sanctions.

“In the world, there is not a politician or country that can succeed in maintaining a hostile policy towards Turkey,” he said, promising that anyone who causes suffering to the Turkish people will pay for it sooner or later.

As long as Erdogan is capable of maintaining relative harmony among the Turkish economic and political elite in this situation, the US’ sanctions are likely to drive Turkey further into the arms of the Eurasian bloc of Russia, Iran, and China.  While Turkey’s aggression in Syria remains a thorn in the side of potential partnership with these rising multipolar powers, the unprecedented pressure from Washington is likely to compel precisely what President Erdogan recently ‘threatened’ in The New York Times: “to look for new friends and allies.’

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