Trump doubles steel and aluminium tariffs on Turkey as lira nosedives

11 August, 2018, 20:35 | Author: Teresa Adams
  • Economic turmoil hits Turkey, US bank stocks react

Trump's "jubilation in inflicting economic hardship on its North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally Turkey is shameful", Zarif wrote on Twitter.

The dollar rose as exposure to Turkey could impact European banks and spark a domino effect throughout Europe as people begin to pull out of those banks and into the US, said Gregan Anderson, macroeconomic strategist at brokerage Bulltick LLC.

Washington imposed the metals tariffs on national security grounds, claiming the glut of steel and aluminum harmed U.S. companies and the economy.

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif waded into the mounting row between Turkey and the United States, accusing Washington of an "addiction to sanctions and bullying".

The economic spat between the U.S. and Turkey has continued to escalate today, as the struggling lira currency plunges in value.

Trump is also declaring that, "Our relations with Turkey are not good at this time!".

Trump, outraged by Turkey's detention of an American evangelical pastor on terrorism charges, said on Twitter he would double duties on Turkish aluminium and steel, to 20 percent and 50 percent respectively.

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Now at a new record low, Turkey's currency has lost more than 40% this year. Since the start of the year, it is now down a full 41 percent against the dollar.

Ankara is under pressure to adopt orthodox steps to protect the lira by aggressively increasing interest rates to rein in double-digit inflation, a move Erdogan has publicly opposed. The weakened currency's value has helped increase inflation and anxious global investors.

Meanwhile, investors are anxious about the economic policies of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who won a new term in office in June with sweeping new powers. "Don't worry", Erdogan assured the crowd.

He has said Turkey's economy remains strong, noting a 7.4 percent growth rate in the first three months of this year.

Erdogan's characteristic defiance in the face of the crisis has further unnerved investors.

Markets have been deeply concerned about the direction of domestic economic policy under Erdogan with inflation hovering around 16% as the central bank refuses to raise interest rates in response. "If there are euros, take these out ... immediately give these to the banks and convert to Turkish lira and by doing this, we fight this war of independence and the future".

"When it comes to cornering Turkey to extract certain concessions that undermine our sovereign rights, it is a whole another story".

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said his country will seek "other friends and allies" around the world if the United States continues to take measures against Turkish government officials.

In an opinion piece in the New York Times, he warned the USA that Ankara had other alternatives as allies.

"The Turkish people expected the United States to unequivocally condemn the attack and express solidarity with Turkey's elected leadership".

Turkey has accused Andrew Craig Brunson of spying and "committing crimes on behalf of terror groups without being a member". Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addressed supporters Friday in the provincial city of Bayburt. In addition to the steep drop in the Turkish Lira, which effectively reduces the impact of the tariffs, the US has so far been unsuccessful in persuading Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to release USA pastor Andrew Brunson.

Brunson's charges include spying for the PKK - listed as a terrorist group by both the USA and Turkey - and Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO).

He added: "Relations with countries who behave like this have reached a point beyond salvaging".

On Friday, Erdogan spoke by telephone with Russian President Vladimir Putin. According to a source in Erdogan's office, the two said they were pleased with the positive direction in their economic and trade ties and with the ongoing cooperation in the energy and defense sectors.

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The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Eye.

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