Erdoğan sacks senior Turkish economy officials

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan sacked dozens of senior officials working at institutions including the Treasury and Finance Ministry, Privatisation Administration and National Lottery.

Erdoğan fired 16 officials at the Treasury and Finance Ministry who were either heads or deputy heads of department, including the chiefs of personnel and strategic development, according to a decision published in the Official Gazette on Wednesday. He did not announce a reason for the dismissals.

Erdoğan is announcing the clean-up as his government seeks to return the country to economic growth after a currency crisis that exploded in August 2018. His government is targeting economic expansion of 5 percent this year, aided by cheap lending from state-run banks and tax cuts, a goal that many economists have labelled as ambitious.

The president also fired Mustafa Çolak, who was deputy head of the Finance Ministry’s revenue department, and Ergin Içenli, who served as deputy chief of the Privatisation Administration. Muammer Çolak, chairman of the National Lottery, was also dismissed.

The Turkish government has also sacked thousands of state officials after a failed military coup in July 2016 that it blames on followers of the Fethullah Gülen movement.