Economy minister says Moody’s conspiring against Turkey

The Turkish Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci on Saturday took a jab at Moody’s following the ratings agency’s downgrade of 17 Turkish banks' credit ratings on Thursday, saying the agency is guilty of conspiring against Turkey, Sputnik news reported.

‘’What type of experts are you?’’ Zeybekci asked Moody’s while speaking at business event in Turkey’s Western province of Denizli.

The move by Moody's, which follows a similar ruling by Fitch earlier his month, to downgrade the credit ratings of Turkish banks came right after Turkey’s central bank raised interest rates to help curb inflation, stabilise the economy and bolster the ailing lira. Turkish banking stocks fell 2.2 percent on Friday, extending an 18-month low. Moody’s announced that banks’ ‘’balance sheets were coming under pressure as financial conditions deteriorated, bad loans increased and financing from abroad became more problematic.’’

The minister noted that the agency treated Turkey differently from other countries, adding that downgrading of Turkish banks’ credit ratings was a crime which spoke for itself. ‘’Suddenly the lights came on they were caught red-handed,’’ the minister said.

Zeybekci has previously said Moody’s decision was of no concern to the government and Turkey would continue with breaking records in the global economy with its high growth rates.