EconoMonitor

The Kapali Carsi

The Turkish duke of moral hazard, encore

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan never ceases to amaze me. Just as I was thinking he had set a new standard in damaging the economy by attacking the Central Bank, he raised the bar by announcing a vast debt amnesty.

Here is the introduction to my latest Hurriyet Daily News (HDN) column, on the Turkish government’s latest (I guess this is their 5th in their 10-year rule) tax/debt amnesty/restructuring. You can read the whole thing at the HDN web site. For a change, I don’t have much to add, except that I can refer you a recent article in the Gulenist Today’s Zaman on the issue, which includes commentaries from experts, including a former Ministry of Finance official who apparently has no idea of the concept moral hazard!:) And if you can read Turkish, Atilla Yesilada has an entertaining take on the issue. I am amazed by Atilla’s ability to make boring econ. topics such fun reads. A joint friend recently noted that he sees Atilla as the greatest Turkish econ. commentator, with me a distant second- which means that I would be nummero uno if I murdered him. But having watched Amadeus, I am well aware that would mean I’d go around mumbling “mediocrities, mediocrities” forever:)…

That’s all I have to say today- except that I’d be grateful if you contributed to the fund set up for my friend Esther, to whom the column was dedicated to (as I noted at the end of the column), and her 18-month old son…

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