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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 00-04-05

Anadolu Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Anadolu Agency Home Page at <http://www.anadoluajansi.gov.tr/>


[01] AA News

05 April 2000 Wednesday

[02] TURKEY-PRESS SCAN

These are some of the major headlines and their brief stories in Turkey's press on April 5, 2000. The Anadolu Ajansi does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their occuracy.

HURRIYET (LIBERAL)

PRESIDENT DEMIREL SENDS MESSAGE TO PARLIAMENTARIANS:
IT DOESN'T MATTER
President Suleyman Demirel put the last point to the discussions regarding the developments on constitutional amendments saying, ''it doesn't matter.'' Demirel said, ''they wanted to drag me in the discussions. It is regardless of question for me to get involved in the question. The parliament will make the constitutional amendment if it can. This means, it will change the principle in the constitution.''

Demirel said he was exposed to attacks as if I caused everything, ''yet it doesn't matter,'' he noted.

AKBULUT: I WILL ANNUAL OPEN VOTES
Parliament Speaker Yildirim Akbulut warned that he would annul the open votes. Akbulut said, decision of the partners to cast votes by showing them, was contrary to the constitution.

TWO F-16 CRASH ON THE AIR
Two F-16 planes which took off from the Fifth Main Jet Base Commandership in Merzifon township of Amasya province in Black Sea region for training flight, hit each other on the air and crashed on ground in Yildizeli township in central Anatolian Sivas province.

MILLIYET (LIBERAL)

TWO F-16 JETS CRASH IN MID AIR
Two F-16 jets, which had taken off Tuesday afternoon from the 5th Main Jet Base Command in Sivas for a training flight crashed in mid air. The wings of the jets collided over the Yildizeli township of Sivas at around 19 hours local time, and both lost control. The pilots, Captain Murat Ozaydin, and First Lieutenant Gungor Ozer managed to eject themselves out of the plunging jets.

TURKISH BUSINESSMEN TO ORGANISE FAIR IN IVORY COAST
Istanbul Chamber of Commerce (ITO) is going to organise a fair in the Ivory Coast between April 18th and 23rd, and introduce Turkey to Africa. President mehmet Yildirim of ITO will head a delegation consisting of the general directors of about 50 companies and the chairmen of 15 chambers. Ivory Coast is one of the major spots along the trade routes of 12 nations. The fair is aimed at introducing TUrkish goods to this developing market.

SURPRISING DECISION BY AKBULUT
Yildirim Akbulut, Parliament Speaker, announced that he will give a break to Wednesday's Pleanery session, in order to prevent the secret vote from turning into an open vote, if it comes to necessitate. Akbulut will read out the instructions perntaining to the secret balloting, and will declare revealed votes as 'invalid'.

CHILDREN SEEKING THEIR RIGHTS
The 'Children's Assembly', established on April 23rd 1995 under the Ankara Metropolitan Municipal Board, convened at a special session on April 4th, Tuesday, on the occasion of the World Children's Rights Day. The children, who convened under the leadreship fo Aysenur Cetin, called on for the immediate translation into life of their rights, which appear on paper but which have not been put in practice.

SABAH (LIBERAL)

TOUGH TASKS FOR THE SECOND QUARTER
An IMF delegation is coming to Turkey in May, to assess the first three months of the implementation of the stand-by agreement it had signed with Turkey. Turkey kept her word, implemented a stability program and yielded the first fruits. The most important of them was the pulling down of domestic loan interest rates down to the 38-47 percent level from 94-100 percent.

10TH AKBANK JAZZ FESTIVAL STARTS IN ANKARA
The 10th Akbank Jazz Festival starts April 6th, Thursday, and it will last for four days. Turkish, and world famous jazz artists will meet their fans. The first concert will take place at Ankara University, the second in Middle East Technical University, and the third and fourth days, at Hilton Hotel. The tickets will be available at the Kizilay, Cankaya, and Bahcelievler branches fo Akbank.

CUMHURIYET (LEFT)

RAU TO VISIT TURKEY IN THE MIDDLE OF THE CRISIS
Johannes Rau, German President, who visited Greece and met with Greek Prime Minister Simitis before visiting Turkey, said if Turkey wants to enter the European Union (EU) and its markets, then it should adjust with the principles of the union. Rau is scheduled to meet with President Suleyman Demirel.

NATO MESSAGE FROM DEMIREL
President Suleyman Demirel issued a message upon 51st anniversary of foundation of NATO.

A written statement issued by Presidential Press Center said Demirel said NATO continued to form basis of security and stability in European-Atlantic region.

EFFORTS TO ADJUST WITH THE EU
The EU Coordination Committee convened for the first time under the chairmanship of Secretary General and Ambassador Volkan Vural within the framework of efforts to adjust with the European Union, officials said on Tuesday.

The participants reached agreement over the necessity of gaining impetus to national plan studies and completing them by September at Monday's convention.

RADIKAL (LEFT) PEOPLE DOES NOT WANT DEMIREL'S TERM IN OFFICE TO BE EXTENDED
People, who live in big cities, does not want to see President Suleyman Demirel in Cankaya Palace again. Those people also don't want the government to be split up if constitutional amendment does not take place. The percent of people, who don't want his term in office to be extended, is 69.7

DIFFICULTY IN TENDER OF NUCLEAR POWER PLANT
The statement of Treasury Undersecretariat saying that they could not give finance guarantee to the Akkuyu Power Plant for the year 2000, particularly in a time when a strict economic program is being implemented, created uneasiness among the consortium officials.

Consortium officials said that the companies involved in the tender for the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant, were required to give a 100 percent credit guarantee by the Electricity Production-Communication Corporation(TEAS).

YENI BINYIL (LIBERAL)

HARD TO REACH 367
The second round of voting on the proposed amendment to the constitution, foreseeing the implementation of the 5+5 formula will be held on Wednesday. Despite full support by the True Path Party (DYP), the results of the first round were not enough for even a ''referendum'', and this second round is not expected either, to bring about a result that would extend the president's term of office. The amendment has to receive 367 'in favor' votes. If it receives less than 330, three thirds of the total number of seats in the Parliament, it will be cancelled altogether; and if it receives something between 330 and 367, a referandum will be held.

FITCH-IBCA DELEGATION IN ANKARA
A delegation representing the Fitch-Ibca rating institution is carrying out contacts in Ankara. The delegation got together with officials at the Treasury Undersecretariat on Tuesday. They are scheduled to meet with officials from the Central Bank of Turkey on Wednesday, and receive information about the latest developments in Turkish economy.

BELGIAN COURT APPROVES FEHRIYE ERDAL'S EXTRADITION TO TURKEY
The Supreme Court of Belgium has approved Fehriye Erdal's extradition to Turkey. Erdal, one of the suspects of the Ozdemir Sabanci murder case, will be extradited to Turkey if the Belgian Ministry of Justice, too, approves of it.

TURKIYE (RIGHT)

THE LAST WORD WILL BE UTTERED TODAY
Ankara began to wait for the results of the second tour. The problem will be solved on amendment package which include, election of Demirel for a second time, making party closure more difficult, and which arrange allowances of parliamentarians. A total of 367 votes are required for amendment. The way to referendum will be led if there votes are between 330- 367. If the votes are less than 330, the proposal would be rejected.

BAHCELI: HIS PLACE IN OUR HEARTS NEVER CHANGED
Devlet Bahceli, leader of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), who spoke at a ceremony which was staged to commemorate Alparslan Turkes, defunct leader of MHP, said, ''throughout three years since he passed away, his place in our hearts and minds has never changed.''

ZAMAN (CONSERVATIVE)

HISTORICAL VOTING
Turkey focused on today's voting. Parliament will have one of the most critical votings in its history. Husamettin Ozkan, Deputy Prime Minister, held last minute meetings with the Virtue Party (FP), and the True Path Party (DYP).

OPERATION FROM SECURITY DEPARTMENT
The Provincial Directorate of Security in Ankara exposed a new illegal fundamentalist organization named Jihad.

Officials said ''two terrorists who left three pipe-bombs into a trash can in Haskoy district of Ankara, were injured when one of the bombs exploded in their own vehicle. They rushed to hospital to be treated. They told the hospital personnel that they injured themselves while cutting meat; however, the doctors were not convinced so the hospital police called the anti- terrorism teams. The two confessed their crime during their first interrogation.

[03] TURKISH TOURISM AGENCIES HOPEFUL ABOUT THE FORTHCOMING SEASON

ISTANBUL - Basaran Ulusoy, Chairman of the Union of Travel agencies of Turkey (TURSAB) said that the forthcoming touristic season was rather hope inspiring.

Basaran told the A.A correspondent, that Turkish tourism sector had suffered a heavy plunge in 1999, with ''a decrease by 23.26 percent in he number of tourists, and a plunge by 30 percent in the income''.

He pointed out that the factors which caused this crisis had been eliminated completely, and their repercussions had diminished greatly, and reiterating that the OSCE Summit in Istanbul, Turkey's admission as a candidate for the EU, and the improving relations between Turkey and Greece contributed greatly to Turkey's bettering her prestige, he added:

''We expect to host the greatest number of tourists from Germany, CIS countries, Britain, the U.S. and various other European countries. In 1998, 9 million 752 thousand tourists had visited Turkey, bringing an income of 7.177 billion U.S. dollars, and this is the least level we hope to reach this year.''

Ulusoy pointed out that Turkey's major problem about the tourism sector was insufficient promotion, and said that the URSAB was working on a ''Financial Support'' project to overcome the financial and economic problems with which the sector was faced.

[04] PRIME MINISTER ECEVIT: ''I WISH EVERY PARLIAMENTARIAN TO STAND BEHIND THEIR SIGNATURES IN FRONT OF EVERYBODY''

ANKARA - Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit, who also acts as the leader of the Democratic Left Party (DSP), said on Wednesday that the only way to overcome the contradiction between the number of signatures and votes, is to hold an open balloting. Ecevit said, ''I wish every parliamentarian to back up their signatures in front of everybody.''

Prime Minister Ecevit who staged a news conference in the Parliament, pointed out that democracy was a regime of openness, and noted that, ''there is no place for secrecy in my political life.''

Ecevit said, ''no one can prevent an MP declaring his vote either before or after he uses it. Anyway, those who gave 406 votes to the motion which was prepared for constitutional amendment, had to disclose the color of their votes on March 29. However, when the number of votes revealed to be under the number of signatures at the end of the first round of voting, every parliamentarian was unjustly blamed. To this end, respectability of the parliament was overshadowed. The contradiction between the number of votes and signatures should be overcome. The way to achieve this is to hold an open balloting. In constitutional change votings in 1995, those who want, had casted their votes openly.''

Ecevit said, ''as Chairman of Bars Union pointed out on Tuesday, it is regardless of question for the Constitutional Court to annul it.''

[05] STAND-BY AGREEMENT IMPLEMENTATIONS - SEVEN FUNDS REVISED IN LETTER OF INTENT GIVEN TO IMF

ANKARA - Seven funds, including Development and Support Fund, were eliminated as promised in the Letter of Intent Turkey submitted to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the related Ministers Council's decision appeared on Wednesday's Official Gazette.

The decrees about the following funds have been annuled: Development and Support Fund; Vegetable Oil Price Stability Fund; Investment Goods Production Encouragement Fund; Institutions which are in Charge of Providing Income to Overseas Enterprises and the the Support Fund for Workers Employed at these Enterprises who Face Financial Difficulties; and Cement Fund.

The incomes of the eliminated funds will be transferred to the budget as of Wednesday. The Finance Ministry will be authorized to do works related with the elimination and transfer of these funds.

In the Letter of Intent which was submitted to the IMF, Turkey promised to eliminate 20 out of the 61 budget funds until the end of February this year. An additional 25 funds also need to be eliminated until August 2000. The remaining funds will be eliminated until the end of June next year.

Except for the Development and Support Fund, the other funds which were eliminated were not active or they have not been operating for a long time.

[06] TREASURY'S MONTHLY STAND-BY REPORT

ANKARA - Treasury Undersecretariat announced on Wednesday that 75 percent of the payments made by the Treasury has been realized in borrowing in the first quarter of 2000.

In its March evaluation report, Treasury Undersecretariat said International Monetary Fund (IMF) Executive Directors Council will convene on April 26.

''Members have been assigned to Telecommunication Council and Banking Council according to the new telecommunication and banking law. As announced in the programme, the foreign currency rate calender has been extended in the way that it will cover the first 3 months of 2001. According to the foreign currency rates announced by the Central Bank, in the first 3 months of 2001, the monthly increase of the package formed by 1 U.S. dollar and 0.77 Euro, will be monthly 0.9 percent,'' it was explained.

The report also said works started to improve present agriculture policies in order to provide direct income to farmers and form a record system.

[07] ANADOLU AGENCY TO CELEBRATE ITS 80TH ANNIVERSARY

ANKARA - Anadolu Agency will celebrate the 80th anniversary of its establishment on Thursday.

The Anadolu Agency, which was founded on April 6th, 1920 with directives of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the Founder of Modern Turkish Republic, closely pursues the technological developments under its main principles like impartial, rapid and accurate news.

The personnel of Anadolu Agency headed by Mehmet Guler, the Chairman of the Executive Board and the President Director General, will visit Anitkabir, the Mausoleum of Ataturk at 11.00 a.m. on Thursday.

Also, an exhibition which will be held by the A.A Photograph News Directorate, will be opened in Anadolu Agency Art Gallery.

Following the opening of the exhibition, a ceremony will be held in the Anadolu Agency Conference Hall.

The special envelopes which were published by the Directorate General of Postal Services upon the 80th anniversary of the establishment of Anadolu Agency, will be put into the market.

Anadolu Agency was founded during the War of Independence to make the rightful case of Turkish people and the voice of national action be heard in Anadolu as well as in the world.

Anadolu Agency, which started transmitting news with an old fashioned machine it had hired, continues to transmit news with the most-advanced computer technology 80 years after its establishment.

Anadolu Agency became the "first national institution" of the Turkish State 17 days before the opening of the Great National Assembly in April 23, 1920.

The Great Leader Ataturk praised Anadolu Agency after the rescue of the state from the occupation of its enemies and the establishment of Turkish Republic. Atatürk underlined the new goal of the agency as "Anadolu Agency will make Turkey's voice be heard all the world."

Mustafa Kemal said on April 8, 1920: ''The center of Ottoman Sultanate, which is the heart of Islam world, was occupied by the enemies and whole homeland and nation came against the biggest threat. The nation launched national and holy struggle in Roumelia and Anatolia. As a result of this, we founded an institution titled ''ANADOLU AGENCY'' under the special delegation composed of the most authorized persons, by taking into consideration that our nation has to be illuminated with the most accurate internal and external news.''

Mustafa Kemal continued, ''the news which will be transmitted by the most rapid devices of the Anadolu Agency, will depend on the real sources and evaluations of our Delegation of Representatives. To this end, I request that the necessary measures rapidly be taken, and also request to be informed about the initiatives to hang the statements of this Agency to the massive areas; to publish, copy, and distribute these statements and to make these statements reached even to the villages.''

Anadolu Agency published its first bulletin on April 12, 1920.

In the first bulletin of the Anadolu Agency which could be considered as a call to the people of Anatolia, was written, ''Anadolu Agency was founded to provide the accurate news to our people when the center of our state is under the occupation of the enemies and when the Anadolu and Roumelia started to take action with determination and will. Anadolu Agency starts to fulfil its duty as of today. It is not necessary to explain that as many as people living there, has to read these news. To this end, we request everybody to help us to write these news in black boards in front of the telegram offices, to publish and distribute them, and to send them to the villages.''

The Agency which started to use telex in 1940's later took a step towards computer era in 1986. The computer network of Anadolu Agency covering all the country and the representations in foreign countries reached to the computer technology of the year 2000's.

Anadolu Agency that has 23 offices in Turkey and 21 offices abroad. The Anadolu Agency, whose principle is to have a correspondent in every part of Turkey, will continue to open new offices in Turkey and abroad in the following days.

Anadolu Agency has close cooperation with the leading news agencies of the world like Associated Press (AP), Reuters(REU), Agence France Presse (AFP), German News Agency (DPA), Italian News Agency (ANSA), and Chinese News Agency (XINHUA). Anadolu Agency also has cooperation agreements with national agencies of nearly 50 countries for exchange of news. The Agency does not only receive news from these sources, but also transmits stories about the developments in Turkey to these foreign agencies.

Anadolu Agency which also attributes importance to international relations, is a member of Organization of Asia-Pasific News Agencies (OANA), and European Alliance of Press Agencies (EAPA). Also, it is among the founders of Alliance of Mediterranean News Agencies (AMAN), Alliance of Turkish Republics News Agencies (TKA), ECO News Agencies (ECONA), and Association of Balkan News Agencies (ABNA).

Anadolu Agency, which takes into consideration the developments in news sector in the recent years, moved into its new headquarters in Tandogan district of Ankara in February 1998.

Anadolu Agency uses vertical blanking interval (VBI) system, which transfers information on television broadcast signals. Stories and photographs reach every part of the country, and extend from Europe to Asia with this system. Thus, a story transmitted from the center (Ankara), can be read from the computers of the subscribers via satellite in seconds.

With this system, Anadolu Agency does not only reach every place in Turkey, but also from Europe to Turkish Republics, and from Middle East to North Africa.

1999 was a giant leap forward year for Anadolu Agency.

The Agency started to offer services to the internet institutions with its communication technology which is developing day by day.

The Agency adopted itself to access internet information by cellular telephones (WAP).

Anadolu Agency, of which the main computer system was rehabilitated, plans to make its news and photograph archives digital.

Anadolu Agency is also one of the four giant agencies which has an advanced photograph technology. The Agency is transmitting more than 100 photographs a day to its subcribers via computer and satellite.

Thus, Anadolu Agency will continue its efficient initiatives within the framework of the principle of ''heralding Turkey's voice to the world.''

Anadolu Agency is producing and transmitting nearly 650 news a day like the four giant agencies of the world.

The giant leap forward which was recorded by the Anadolu Agency in 80 years, is the guarantee of its following successes.

[08] WORLD BANK REPORT SAYS TURKEY WILL BE THE COUNTRY WHICH RAPIDLY IMPLEMENTS PRIVATIZATION IN ITS REGION BETWEEN 2000 AND 2001

WASHINGTON D.C./ANKARA - The World Bank Global Development Finance-2000 Report said that Turkey and Poland will be the countries which rapidly implement privatization in their region between 2000 and 2001.

The report said that Turkey and Poland will be two countries which will gain revenues from privatization in the following two years.

The Stand-By agreement signed with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) had positive effects on the markets and investors, the report noted.

The report stated that within this framework, the stock market increased and the Turkey's risks reduced.

Turkey can meet its short-term debts in foreign currency with sufficient foreign currency reserves and a reasonable debt capacity, and without facing any risks, the report added.

[09] PROF. SEN ANNOUNCES STUDY OF TURKEY RESEARCH CENTER OVER TURKISH ECONOMY IN EU

ANKARA - Prof. Faruk Sen, Director of Turkey Research Center (TAM) said on Wednesday that the investments of Turkish enterpreneurs in Germany are currently 12.4 billion German Marks and their turnovers are 50.3 billion German Marks.

Sen announced the study titled ''Turkish economy in the European Union.''

In 1960, Turkish citizens living in Germany were only 2,700 people and now their numbers reached 2 million 429,000 including 320,000 who hold German citizenship. He also noted that 9,000 more Turks will acquire German citizenship in 2003 by the new citizenship law.

Today, in Germany, 607 Turkish families have a total income of 28 billion German Marks and the contribution of Turks to German gross national product is 78.6 billion German Marks, he explained.

Sen also said 55,200 Turkish enterpreneurs are operating business in 91 different branches and they employ 293,000 people. He also stressed that Turkish enterpreneurs have become more successful than Italian, Greek, and Yugoslavian enterpreneurs who came to Germany before Turks.

German Ambassador to Ankara, Rudolf Schmidt noted that the companies set up by Turkish enterpreneurs in Germany had great contributions to Germany. Schmidt said Turkish enterpreneurs have become extremely successful in integrating and added that they were very well accepted and praised by German people.

Owner of Oger Tourism firm, Vural Oger said they targeted a turnover of 1 billion German Marks this year and noted that the indications were very good. ''I am hoping that we will break a record this year,'' Oger said.

[10] FOREIGN MINISTER CEM IN TOKYO

TOKYO - Foreign Minister Ismail Cem said on Wednesday that he expected Japan to increase its credit amount for Turkey.

Cem, who is visiting the Japanese capital Tokyo, was first given a briefing by the diplomats at the Turkish Embassy to Tokyo and later he had a meeting with Japanese House of Representatives Chairman Soichiro Ito.

After having lunch with Toshifumi Takei, Chairman of Turkish-Japanese Business Council, Cem attended the opening of a webpage of the Turkish Embassy in Tokyo prepared in Japanese language.

The website www.turkey.or.jp includes information about the civilizations which lived in Anatolia and other tourism information. It also offers detailed explanations about visa and citizenship procedures in Turkey.

Responding to a question, Cem said they expected an increase in the foreign capital flow from Japan to Turkey.

Reminding that Japan is one of the leading countries giving credit to Turkey, Cem said he expected Japan to increase the amount of credit which is gives to Turkey.

''The credit we obtained from Japan in the last 3 years is one third of what we received in the last 26 years. I believe this will further increase. The reason is simple: The country which is giving the credit is giving it to make money. The development of Turkish economy and our EU candidacy is creating an opportunity to obtain cheaper credit. Therefore, I am expecting Japan to increase its credit for Turkey,'' Cem said.

Cem was earlier scheduled to meet with Japanese Foreign Minister Yohei Kono on Wednesday. However, his schedule changed after Japanese Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi went into a coma and Yoshiro Mori, the leader of the Liberal Democrat Party was assigned as the Prime Minister. Cem will meet Kono on Thursday. Cem will also have a meeting with Prince Mikasa on Thursday.

[11] FINANCIAL SUPPORT TO JOINT PROJECTS IN BLACK SEA

ISTANBUL - Black Sea Trade and Development Bank (KTKB) which was formed by the 11 member countries of Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization started financing its projects.

Following a 10 million U.S. dollar credit it provided for small and medium scale enterprises (KOBI's) which suffered loss because of the earthquake, the Bank is now getting ready to finance other projects.

The Bank had signed its first credit agreement in December 1999 for a pipeline project in the Balkans, Executive Council Chairman Ersoy Volkan told A.A.

Volkan stated that the project which is jointly financed with Europe Public Improvements and Development Bank aims to increase the amount of natural gas transferred from Russia to Turkey. ''The capacity of the pipeline passsing from Ukrania, Moldova, Romania, and Bulgaria will be doubled. The total credit of the project is 76 million U.S. dollars,'' he said.

Apart from these, they will give credits to two investment and development banks and will sign an agreement with them before April 15, he noted.

When they give a credit, Volkan said, it was important for them to provide financing to two or three countries and therefore help to develop economic development and trade among countries.

He also stressed that they targeted to develop the Black Sea region and did not evaluate the matters politically. He added that they give priority to KOBI's.

[12] CHHIBBER, WORLD BANK'S TURKEY DIRECTOR, SAYS THE BANK THINKS OF GIVING 500 MILLION U.S. DOLLAR FUND TO TURKEY FOR RECONSTRUCTION OF PUBLIC BANKS

ANKARA - Ajay Chhiber, World Bank's Turkey Director, said on Wednesday that the World Bank thinks of giving 500 million U.S. dollar fund to Turkey for the reconstruction of public banks.

Responding to the questions of the journalists, Chhibber noted that they think of a financial contribution worth of nearly two billion U.S. dollars and that 1.56 billion of this contribution will be within the framework of the financial sector adjustment loan.

Responding to another question, Chhibber stated that they do not finance the nuclear energy projects, but that they are not against the usage of nuclear energy for the variety of energy resources.

Chhibber added that they are in favour of the continuation of the build- operate-transfer and build-operate energy contracts.

[13] FIRST ARTICLE OF CONSTITUTIONAL CHANGE ACCEPTED

ANKARA - The first article of the constitutional change over Article 69 has been accepted by 349 votes against 134 votes.

A total of 540 deputies participated in the voting over the article which proposes a change to make it more difficult to close political parties. Nine deputies abstained and the votes of 48 deputies were invalid in the voting.

Announcing the results, Parliament Speaker Akbulut said they had three fifth majority of the deputies which is the specified ratio by the Constitution. Later, Akbulut started the voting of the second article of the proposal which envisages a change in Article 86 of the Constitution.

During the voting, Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and leader of the Nationalist Party (MHP) did not enter the voting cabins and preferred to use their votes openly. This caused the protest of Virtue Party (FP) members while it arose applause from Democratic Left Party (DSP) deputies.

True Path Party (DYP) leader Tansu Ciller and Motherland Party (ANAP) also did not enter the voting cabins. FP leader Recai Kutan used his vote in the cabin.

FP deputies protested when Ministers Council members except for State Minister Sadi Somuncuoglu, all DSP deputies and a majority of MHP deputies did not enter the cabin.

[14] CHHIBBER, WORLD BANK'S TURKEY DIRECTOR, SAYS GOVERNMENT HAS IMPLEMENTED SIGNIFICANT REFORMS

ANKARA - Ajay Chhibber, the World Bank's Turkey Director, said on Wednesday that the government has implemented significant reforms.

Responding to the questions of the journalists, Chhibber noted that what will happen following the constitutional amendment is not clear but that the reforms of the government should continue. Chhibber added that this is in the benefit of Turkey.

Responding a question on economic structural reform, Chhibber stated that giving 750 million U.S. dollar loan is on the agenda and that two million of this loan will be used in target regions within the framework of the agricultural assistance program.

Chhibber stressed that this money will directly be given to the Agriculture and Rural Affairs Ministry.

Responding a question on the sale of eight banks transferred to the Savings Deposit Insurance Fund, Chhibber said that the World Bank will grant technical assistance and that they know Zekeriya Temizel, the Chairman of the Banking Arrangement and Audit Board, from his term in office as the Finance Minister.

After the board officially starts functioning, they will hold contacts with Temizel, Chhibber emphasized.

Chhibber said that the inflation rate is in good situation in the third month of 2000 and that the high rate of inflation in January and February resulted from the increase in the prices of agricultural products and oil in November and December 1999.

It is hard to determine whether or not Turkey will reach its inflation target of 20 percent, Chhibber noted.

Chhibber stated that the foreign factors are effective in determining the inflation rate but that he thinks that the inflation rate will not be more than the targeted inflation rate by the end of 2000.

Responding another question, Chhibber said that the decision regarding the division the Turkish Electricity Inc. (TEAS) in three parts carries importance and that Turkey has taken the decisions which should be taken in the energy sector.

Chibber stressed that the government implement the reforms rather than neglecting them despite its intensive agenda.

The Energy Law should be passed in June, and the arrangement board in energy sector should be formed until the end of 2000, Chhibber emphasized.

Chhibber added that the World Bank is in favour of Turkey's accelerating the privatization initiatives in energy sector.

[15] SECOND ARTICLE OF CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT BILL ADOPTED

ANKARA - Parliamentary General Assembly adopted on Wednesday the second article of the constitutional amendment bill which foresees a change in Article 86 of the Constitution, by 345 votes to 140 votes.

A total of 519 deputies participated in the voting of the second article. 345 of the deputies voted in favour of the second article while 140 deputies voted against this article.

A total of 12 deputies abstained from voting while 17 votes were invalid.

Yildirim Akbulut, the Parliament Speaker, said that the three-fifth majority of the votes of the deputies was provided for the second article and that this article was adopted.

Then, the secret ballot for the amendment of the Article 101 of the Constitution which is about the presidential elections, started.

[16] OECE FINANCIAL MARKET TRENDS REPORT SAYS TURKISH BANKING SECTOR WILL BE IN CONSONANT WITH INTERNATIONAL STANDARDS

ISTANBUL - The Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development's (OECD) report titled ''Financial Market Trends'' said that Turkish banking sector will be in consonant with the international standards by the new legal arrangements.

The report said that the banking sector started to function systematically and reached stability after the Banking Law was passed.

The Banking Arrangement and Audit Board will start functioning within the framework of this new law, the report noted.

The report which praised the reforms Turkey has been implementing, stated that the confidence in Turkish banking sector will continue and that new legal arrangements were a preliminary step for the agreements signed with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Turkish banking system will be in consonant with the international standards and the standards of the European Union (EU) with the reforms and measures which are planned to be implemented.

[17] CHILDREN WITH THALASSAEMIA TO COME TOGETHER IN ANTALYA

ANKARA - Children with thalassaemia who are coming from Azerbaijan, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) and other countries as well as scientists will come together at the 1st International Thalassaemia Summer School which will be organized in Antalya-Goynuk between April 22 and 26 under the auspices of President Suleyman Demirel.

The Summer School is organized through the joint efforts of World Health Organization (WHO), World Thalassaemia Federation, Turkish, Azerbaijani and TRNC health ministries and it is supported by thalassaemia foundations and associations of various countries.

Scientists coming from Italy, Greece, Israel, Germany, the U.S., and Britain will speak at the panels. People with thalassaemia and their relatives will share their experiences and they will also have the chance to consult the experts about the illness.

At the Summer School which will take place at Royal Resort Hotel, children will also celebrate April 23, National Sovereignty and Children's Day.

[18] A.A


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