Year 1 of the pandemic in the economy: Unemployment and poverty are bad ECONOMY | DW

The first events of Covidien-19 in Turkey are described on March 11, 2020, the death that caused the death of the first Covidien took place on March 15, 2020. In recent years, public health and social life have been hit hard by a recent pandemic, which has had a profound effect on the Turkish economy. The pandemic has closed thousands of businesses in the past year, and poverty and unemployment have risen. According to experts, the state should provide direct support to families and businesses to heal the wounds in the economy.

According to official data, in the period from April to May 2020, the Turkish economy pandemic was hit by 10 percent less. The increase in consumption in the second half of the year with large credit opportunities, led to the closure of Turkey with an annual growth of 1.8 percent. Turkey, closing in the G-20 countries by growing 2020, became one of the two countries along with China.

“Living conditions have become more difficult”

Speaking to DW Turk, Piri Reis University Vice Rector. Dr. Erhan Aslanoglu, describing the growth, said “Turkey’s largest credit expansion in history” is possible. On the other hand, Prof. Aslanoglu said: “But when we look at the broadly defined unemployment, we see that the numbers are starting to increase significantly and the labor force is declining. Especially those who work in such areas. The service sector, tourism and businesses have suffered serious revenue losses. “A combination of high unemployment and inflation has made living conditions very difficult.”

Prof. Dr. Erhan Aslanoğlu

Widespread unemployment is rising

According to official data, unemployment is around 13 percent and is close to a pandemic. However, according to the latest data released by TURKSTAT, the overall unemployment rate, which includes those who refuse to look for work, has exceeded 29 percent. Real unemployment has not yet been reflected in official data due to applications such as short-term employment benefits, unpaid leave benefits and a ban on dismissal.

In the last year, 4 million 186 thousand people were given the right to receive short-term benefits, 2 million 506 thousand people were given the right to receive a cash salary. At the same time, inflation rose. Consumer inflation, which was around 12 percent in March 2020, reached 16 percent at the end of February. However, according to trade unions and the opposition, street inflation exceeds 30 percent.

“We haven’t seen the worst in inflation yet”

According to economist Mustafa Murat Kubilay, who evaluates the last year of the economy in DW Turkish, the data show that the loss of employment in the last year reached 1 million people.

Mustafa Murat Kubilay

Mustafa Murat Kubilay

“In addition to all these negative developments, inflation is at 15.6 percent last year. Official inflation. The cost of living and therefore poverty in 2021,” Kubilay said. will increase in the year. It should also be noted that the last year’s annual increase in the producer price index was 27.1 percent, so we did not see the worst situation. It will continue in the coming period. Homes should be given direct support. “

Albayrak’s course and TL value

One of the most important developments in the economy in 2020, hit by the pandemic, was the surprise decision of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s son-in-law Berat Albayrak to resign as Minister of Treasury and Finance. During the Albayrak period, the dollar exchange rate rose to 8.50 pounds, especially with the reassuring messages given by Naci Agbal, who was brought to the post of the Governor of the Central Bank, and interest rates rose below 7 pounds after Albayrak. Fluctuations in the dollar exchange rate, which is around 7.50 TL, continue to be affected by domestic and foreign developments.

“Companies’ problems continue”

The economic downturn continues to affect companies as well as workers. Turkish Confederation of Construction and Business (TURKONFED) President Orhan Turan, which has a total of about 40 thousand companies, severe fluctuations in the exchange rate have had a very negative impact on the company’s plans for the near future.

Pointing to Turkey’s growing liquidity with low interest rates last year, Turan told DW Türk, “During this period, our stocks fell, we saw negative real interest rates. We increased the vulnerability of the economy due to fluctuations. “he says.

The announced support is not satisfactory

Many support packages have been announced by the government over the past year. However, insufficient support for households has increased poverty. According to a research report prepared by DISC-R, Turkey was one of the countries in the world at least during COVIDIEN-19. During this period, Turkey lagged behind even the poorest countries, providing only 1.1 percent of national income in cash. TURKONFED President Turan, noting that assistance to families and companies in many countries reaches 15-20 percent of national income, “Although in many countries grants are given to SMEs, our support remains at 1 percent nationally. Postponement, SGK postponement is not a solution, “he says.

Orhan Turan

Orhan Turan

According to the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce, 20,000 businesses in Istanbul alone have temporarily or completely stopped operating due to the pandemic in the past year. During the pandemic, the government announced a rental support of between 500 and 750 TL with a three-month income support for artisans and artisans. In addition, a support package of between 2 thousand TL and 40 thousand TL per job was applied to the food and beverage sector. However, these supports were not enough. In early March, the main opposition party, the CHP, said in a statement that insufficient support packages were announced in Turkey, while 78 percent of trade transactions were announced, while 86 percent of rents could not pay invoices and taxes.

“Non-reciprocal cash support should be provided”

Trade representatives believe that in 2021, both small businesses and households should be provided with free cash support to heal the wounds of the pandemic. Stressing the need for a strong grant package, Orhan Turan said that the grants will not be for holdings or large companies; It should be aimed at SMEs and artisans and craftsmen. “The path to be followed during the pandemic was continued with credit deferrals and deferral packages. We think that the grant for the water of life, that is, free, non-refundable, support should be given to the world at this time, as in developing countries,” Turan said.

Aram Ekin Duran

© Deutsche Welle Turkish

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