Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has criticized the Turkish government over the economic policies it has been following, saying the country’s middle class has “collapsed.”
“The late [President Turgut] Özal would describe the tradesmen as the middle class. If the middle class is strong, the state stands, there will be peace in Turkey. Now, there is no middle class,” Kılıçdaroğlu said, referring to the former president who ruled Turkey in the early 1990’s.
The CHP leader’s remarks came during a meeting with tradesmen and livestock foundations and chambers.
“About 1.7 million businesses have shut down. We told [the government] to at least pay the rents of [tradesmen] for three months. What will happen; this does not create a huge burden on the state. We also made the calculations for this [or] re-restructure the bank debts of workers and farmers. You can say, ‘I will pay your [debt’s] interest rate as a social state, if you are unable to’,” Kılıçdaroğlu said.
“You can call the banks and say, ‘There is a pandemic, I will pay the interest rates as the state.’ And believe me, all of them will decrease [the interest rates],” he said. “Thus, the trust between the tradesmen or industrials with the state would consolidate.”
The CHP chief said that the state is paying about 38 billion Turkish Liras (about $5.5 billion) of interest rate per month, and the said suggestions could have carried out with half of this figure.
Kılıçdaroğlu also said that the agriculture and livestock sectors are facing “serious problems.”
If the government had followed a “healthy and consistent planning” in animal breeding, Turkey would have exported its livestock to all of the Middle East, Kılıçdaroğlu said.
“We recently imported sunflower seeds. It is supposed to be used in animal breeding. I am having a hard time understanding how Turkey can import these,” he added.
Hurriyet Daily News