Turkey’s glass half-full but remains insufficient: World Bank Turkey director

Compared to the drive of the first half of the 2000s, Turkey is exhibiting a slower pace of reform, according to the World Bank’s Turkey director. ‘That is a concern because if Turkey wants to be part of the best, it needs to move at the pace of the best,’ says Martin Raiser Turkey needs to accelerate its reform process if it wants to fulfill its ambitions, according to World Bank Turkey director Martin Raiser.

“For most Turkish people, staying where they are today is not an option. They’d like to get into the top 10.  For that, more reforms are needed,” said Raiser.

“It’s not clear to me whether the current pace is sufficient to fulfill the ambitions Turkey has,” Raiser told the Hürriyet Daily News in a recent interview.

The World Bank readjusted its growth forecast for Turkey to 3.5. You said first-quarter numbers were surprisingly good, adding that you were not expecting growth to maintain such momentum and that you were encouraged by the strong performance of net exports. What does this tell us?

One thing it reminds us of is that Turkey is a part of Europe economically and as Europe recovers, Turkey does as well. We perhaps forgot a little bit that this was the case during the years Europe was not doing so well and it was not so attractive to be so dependent on the European economy. Now that we see recovery in Europe, we see just how important it is for Turkish exporters in particular. This is a good thing and we expect European recovery to continue.

The second thing it tells us is that exports are not entirely insensitive to the real exchange rate movements. The Turkish Lira has adjusted; this has conferred a cost advantage on Turkish...

Continue reading on: