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International Financial Crises and the Political Economy of Financial Reforms in Turkey: 1994-2009

Authors: Birgül Şakar


This study1 holds for the formation of international financial crisis and political factors for economic crisis in Turkey, are evaluated in chronological order. The international arena and relevant studies conducted in Turkey work in the literature are assessed. The main purpose of the study is to hold the linkage between the crises and political stability in Turkey in details, and to examine the position of Turkey in this regard. The introduction part follows the literature survey on the models explaining causes and results of the crises, the second part of the study. In the third part, the formations of the world financial crises are studied. The fourth part, financial crisis in Turkey in 1994, 2000, 2001 and 2008 are reviewed and their political reasons are analyzed. In the last part of the study the results and recommendations are held. Political administrations have laid the grounds for an economic crisis in Turkey. In this study, the emergence of an economic crisis in Turkey and the developments after the crisis are chronologically examined and an explanation is offered as to the cause and effect relationship between the political administration and economic equilibrium in the country. Economic crises can be characterized as follows: high prices of consumables, high interest rates, current account deficits, budget deficits, structural defects in government finance, rising inflation and fixed currency applications, rising government debt, declining savings rates and increased dependency on foreign capital stock. Entering into the conditions of crisis during a time when the exchange value of the country-s national currency was rising, speculative finance movements and shrinking of foreign currency reserves happened due to expectations for devaluation and because of foreign investors- resistance to financing national debt, and a financial risk occurs. During the February 2001 crisis and immediately following, devaluation and reduction of value occurred in Turkey-s stock market. While changing over to the system of floating exchange rates in the midst of this crisis, the effects of the crisis on the real economy are discussed in this study. Administered politics include financial reforms, such as the rearrangement of banking systems. These reforms followed with the provision of foreign financial support. There have been winners and losers in the imbalance of income distribution, which has recently become more evident in Turkey-s fragile economy.

Keywords: Economics, marketing crisis, financial reforms, political economy

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