Coup Attempt in Turkey Costs Economy Over $100 Billion

The coup attempt in Turkey that was foiled last month that was seeking the ouster of the government of current President Recep Tayyip Erdogan cost the economy in Turkey over 300 billion lira or $100 billion, said the trade minister on Tuesday.

Bulent Tufenkci the Commerce and Customs Minister was quoted as telling a reporter from a local newspaper that the heavy cost may even increase, but insisted that the economic fundamentals in Turkey remained strong.

Helicopters, warplanes, bombs, weapons and buildings all added up to 300 billion lira. He added that he might have underestimated the costs from the amount of destruction done the night of the attempted coup.

However, the minister did warn that the full picture of the economic cost would be seen over the medium term even if some investors were put off during the short term.

He added that the attempted coup members made the country appear to be a third world country.

Investors in the country are not going to come when they see tanks that are deployed in public streets and when the parliament building is bombed.

He added that some orders from foreign investors were cancelled following the unsuccessful coup attempt. However, Tufenkci did say that despite all the problems caused by the coup attempt, Turkey managed to control the overall situation.

Had the attempted coup been in another country, the markets would have remained closed for up to a week, he added. The coup was carried out on a Friday but the financial markets across Turkey were up and running on a normal basis following the two-day weekend.

He said interest rates did not rise at an extraordinary rate and the losses in the stock exchange were limited. He added that it was not necessary to revise the growth estimates or even figures for exports, as the nation has been able to stand firm.

The government did suspend all annual leave for personnel in the public sector following the coup attempt, which was blamed by the Turkish government on supporters of Fethullah Gulen an Islamic cleric based in the U.S.

The coup attempt affected tourism, which has been hit already by foreigners not arriving due to fears for their security following attacks and the warplane crisis with Russia.

The amount of foreigners making visits to Turkey fell by more than 40% during June to a low for the year, but optimism reigns that Russians will return after the government repaired its differences with Moscow.

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