Erdoğan will deal with currency manipulators after poll

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said he would take measures to end manipulation of the lira currency after elections in less than three weeks.

“Let them carry on with their manipulations,” Erdoğan said in a speech in the northwestern region of Sakarya, according to Turkish newspaper Haberturk. “We will deal with them after June 24 with a very serious manifesto.”

Turkey’s lira hit a record low of 4.92 per dollar two weeks ago after Erdoğan said he would decrease interest rates after the vote. The central bank intervened, raising interest rates by 300 basis points to 16.5 percent, the second highest rate in emerging markets after crisis-hit Argentina. Inflation of 12.2 percent in May, announced on Monday, has led investors to call for more rate hikes before the poll.

Erdoğan said his political opponents had learnt nothing from Turkey’s success, which included paying back IMF debt and growing the economy at almost 6 percent annually. Turkey has also increased average income to 63 percent of the European average from 35 euro, he said.

Turkey will hold both presidential and parliamentary elections on June 24, with most polls signaling that Erdoğan will be forced into a run-off on July 8.