Caglayan rebuffs claims of "election economy" after delay in fiscal rule
State Minister for Foreign Trade Minister Zafer Caglayan yesterday rejected allegations that the government will go on a spending spree ahead of next year's general elections, after Parliament delayed passage of a new fiscal discipline rule designed to protect fiscal policies from political influence and populism. Turkey has in practice been following a fiscal rule successfully for years without any legislation, Caglayan told reporters, citing as proof the rate of public debt to gross domestic product (GDP), which now stands at 45 percent, and the rate of budget deficit to GDP at 5 percent. "Turkey sees elections every one or two years," he said. "But the government has never engaged in populist economic policies before any of these elections. If it had, we could never have achieved our current economic figures." Caglayan stressed that the delay in fiscal rule legislation until after Parliament's summer recess will not mean a spending spree ahead of general elections.