ISTANBUL, Sept 13 (Reuters) - Turkey plans to announce a new policy to boost domestic savings and reduce its reliance on foreign capital, Treasury and Finance Minister Berat Albayrak said on Friday, a month after Turks’ foreign holdings logged a new record high.
Since Turkey’s currency crisis last year, which tipped the economy into recession, Turks have snapped up dollars and euros as a hedge against the lira, a trend that has kept Turkey’s currency on edge this year.
“A major policy initiative to boost domestic savings is to be announced. This will lead to long-term growth and reduce reliance on short-term capital flows,” Albayrak wrote in a column on the Euronews web site.
Forex deposits and funds including precious metals of Turkish local individuals and corporates stood at $188.97 billion at the end of August, down slightly from a record high of $190.51 billion on Aug. 16, central bank data showed.
The economy has begun to recover from recession but another spillover is billions of dollars worth of bad debt that sits on the balance sheets of Turkish banks, which lent to companies that could not afford to service them as a result of the crisis.
Albayrak, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan’s son-in-law, added in the column that “several” investors were interested in forming funds to acquire distressed loans, particularly in the energy and construction sectors.
“We are keen to introduce necessary rules and regulations to extend our support to (the) business environment,” he said. (Reporting by Jonathan Spicer; Editing by Ece Toksabay and Edmund Blair)