At a time when President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) are being criticized for wasting taxpayers’ money, a report from Turkey’s Court of Accounts has revealed that a newly established presidential agency, the Investment Office, has spent around $10 million in one year, the Birgün daily reported.
According to the court’s report, the Investment Office has spent TL 53 million ($9.2 million) since its establishment by a presidential decree in July 2018. The office was established shortly after Erdoğan was elected president under an executive presidential system, which granted him extensive powers, in June 2018.
The report showed that the Investment Office spent TL10 million to benefit from foreign advisors. A total of TL 9.3 million was paid to these advisors as salary, while the remainder was cited as “other expenses” in the court’s report such as their accommodation and travel expenses.
The Investment Office also spent TL 12 million in one year for the expenses of its permanent staff.
Auditors from the Court of Accounts criticized the absence of a budget for the Investment Office, which also paid TL 2 million to advertising and promotional organizations.