Turkey’s inflation to hit single digits by 2020, says Erdoğan

Turkey’s interest rates will continue to fall and inflation is expected to hit single digits in 2020, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on Saturday. 

Erdoğan’s statement arrive as the country’s inflation rate is falling after a currency crisis last year crimped demand for goods and services, forcing manufacturers to slow price increases.

"Unfortunately, interest rates had increased to 40 percent. What happened? We removed the Central Bank chief and with our new governor the interest rates declined to 13.5 percent," Dünya newspaper quoted Erdoğan as saying during an opening ceremony for social security centres in Istanbul.

Erdoğan on July 6 unexpectedly removed central bank Governor Murat Çetinkaya from his post for not cutting interest rates.

"And the inflation rate will hit single digits in 2020," Erdoğan said, adding that the unemployment rate is also expected to decline, referencing data of September.

"The unemployment rate, which we declined to 8.4 percent, increased to 14 percent after the exchange rate and inflation attack we have been subjected to (in Aug. 2018). We expect this rate to start declining again with the September data," the Turksish president said.

Turkey's debt to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) was $23.5 billion when Turkey’s ruling  Justice and Development Party (AKP) came to power, Erdoğan recalled.

Pointing out that era had come to an end, "Now, we do not have anything to do with the IMF," Erdoğan said.

The Turkish president also vowed an increase in employment and production.

"Mobility has started; from the decline in interest rates to property and car sales," he said. 

Erdoğan underlined the tourism sector as a promising contributor to the Turkish economy, saying Turkey is expecting more than 50 million tourists this year.