Income inequality in post-pandemic Turkey
30 May 2021
In the rapidly changing agenda of our fair country, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan points to robust growth in the first quarter of 2021. The official figures will be announced on Monday, but a strong growth performance after the negative impact of COVID-19 in Q1 2020 figures will not be a surprise.
Say no to global green gentrification
25 May 2021
The Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK) released unemployment figures in Turkey this week. The youth unemployment rate has now reached 25.3 percent, which of course, only counts people who are still actively looking for a job. If you add young people who have lost their hope of finding one, that figure rises to 36.5 percent in the first quarter of 2021. You might say that it is the responsibility of the government of Turkey to fix this, and you would be right. Realistically, however, we know that even if that is possible, it is highly improbable. I believe that what we see in Turkey points to a broader economic reality that global policymakers, who are currently designing pandemic recovery, need to take into account.
Another goat, another dunam
16 May 2021
Doing Business in Israel is easy. Doing business in neighboring Palestine is not. I learned this the hard way, through experience. I was talking to a truly frustrated World Bank officer two decades ago at the King David Hotel in Jerusalem. Looking over the walls that were last mended by my Ottoman ancestors, I was trying to learn about her experience of working in the place. “If you have a project to support the Palestinian economy, you need to convince a designated Israeli official,” she told me. “You do your best. You’re happy to see progress over time, and you feel that you’re talking the same language with this official.”
Trading in the Middle East
09 May 2021
I was talking to a foreign diplomat in Ankara the other day about how establishing diplomatic ties between countries is simpler than building up economic ties. Exchanging ambassadors is a straight-forward procedure when compared to the complexity of thousands or more economic actors reaching out into the other country, finding people they can work with, and navigating the inevitably complex physical and bureaucratic procedures the trade involves.
A Blue Growth Strategy for Cyprus
02 May 2021
While sitting in my office in Ankara, I was reading the Bruegel study on the “Geopolitical implications of the Green Deal,” which claims to be “a plan to decarbonize the EU economy by 2050, revolutionize the EU’s energy system, profoundly transform the economy and inspire efforts to combat climate change.”