Turkey’s food prices catapult compared to OECD average in 2018

Turkey’s food prices skyrocketed compared to other OECD countries in 2018, with the country registering 25.1 percent in food inflation compared to the OECD average of 1.8 percent for last year, Euronews Turkish reported.

Turkey also measured well above OECD countries in price increases in the energy sector last year, with a 22.8 percent increase compared to the OECD’s general average of 3.6 percent, it said, citing the latest OECD Consumer Price Index report. 

Turkish inflation inched up further in January with food price increases accelerating to 31 percent from 25.1 percent the previous month. 

Turkey is seeking to curb inflation from the supply side by reducing sales taxes on goods such as cars and home appliances, and cutting the price of natural gas as the country continues to recover from a currency crisis in 2018, which saw the Turkish lira lose a third of its value. 

Similar efforts by the government to curb food prices by issuing warnings to retailers and wholesalers appear to be failing.

The authorities have started legal proceedings against some food markets, after sending in local police forces to check shelves, and against wholesalers accused of hoarding goods such as onions and tomatoes.