Erdoğan reverses course on capital exodus

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan appeared to make a swift about turn on Monday after labelling businessmen who took money out of the country as “traitors”.

In a speech in the capital Ankara, Erdoğan said he was not requesting a limit on capital outflows, rather businessmen should take a “patriotic stance” on how they invest. Moving money out of the country for investment was ok, he said.

“What I am saying is that businessmen should take a national stance when our country is faced with attacks and attempts to put our economy under pressure,” Erdoğan said.

The “traitors”, he said, were members of the Fethullah Gülen movement, which the government and military labels as a terrorist organisation, and the armed separatist Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).

The lira strengthened on the comments. It rose to as much as 3.9 per dollar after falling to 3.95 earlier. It closed Friday at 3.91.