Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan released a statement earlier this month announcing that he will change Turkey’s name to “Turkiye.”
“The word ‘Turkiye’ represents and expresses the culture, civilization and values of the Turkish nation in the best way,” read the statement.
“Turkiye” is the name used for the country in Turkish, and the country now wants to carry that name over to international recognition:
“In the context of strengthening the ‘Turkiye’ brand, in all types of activities and correspondence, especially in official relations with other countries and international institutions and organizations, the term ‘Turkiye’ will be used instead of terms such as ‘Turkey’, ‘Turkei’, ‘Turquie’ and so on.”
“Turkiye is accepted as an umbrella brand for our country in national and international venues,” Erdogan maintained. “Turkiye is the best representation and expression of the Turkish people’s culture, civilization and values.”
But neither Erdogan nor any of his representatives have indicated when exactly the name change will officially be instated: “The exact timing for the name change is still under consideration by the government,” a senior government official said to the Middle East Eye. “But the process is ongoing.”
Inflation in Turkey reaches two-decade high
Inflation in Turkey soared to 36% at the beginning of the month, the highest in Erdogan era, and it may be headed for the stratosphere, up to a possible 50%, some experts say.
With prices for food and drink up nearly 44% annually, Turkey’s economic status is becoming increasingly shaky; looking back at December 2021 as a whole, the country’s annual inflation rate spiked to 36.1% last month, its highest rate in the 19 years that Tayyip Erdogan has been in power.
The Turkish lira suffered the worst year it has had against other currencies during 2021; now, the dire economic situation in the country shows the reality of its currency crisis, which was created by the president’s unorthodox interest rate-cutting policies.
Inflation a result of President Erdogan’s policies
Turkish Statistical Institute data showed on Monday that in the month of December alone, consumer prices in Turkey reached double digit inflation, rising 13.58%, causing havoc for the household budgets of its people, who were forced to queue for bread in some places — while Greeks lined up in stores near the border to purchase Christmas bargains due to the relative strength of the euro.
The consumer price index computed annually was even greater than the projections of a Reuters poll forecast of 30.6%. Meanwhile, must-have items such as food and transportation rose even faster, Reuters says.
The Turkish lira lost a staggering 44% of its value last year as Erdogan ordered the central bank of the country to cut interest rates deeply in a program to prioritize credit and exports over currency strength and price stability.