Turkey pledges more transparency in public spending

Turkey’s government pledged to reveal more details about public spending, seeking to answer criticism that it has become more secretive about where taxpayer money goes.

The government will provide clear details about expenditure and publish the data on a new website – harcama.gov.tr, the state-run Anadolu news agency said on Wednesday, citing an annual programme published by the Turkish presidency this week. Harcama translates as spending in English.

Turkey has faced criticism over budget reporting after the governing Justice and Development Party (AKP) altered public procurement laws to make tenders less inclusive and transparent and curbed oversight of spending by the court of accounts. It has also transferred the country’s largest public enterprises to a sovereign wealth fund away from parliamentary oversight.

The government will publish the results of public tenders online, Anadolu said. It will also seek to improve the literacy of the general public on budgetary matters, the news agency reported.