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Turkish Press Review, 01-05-01

Turkish Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: Turkish Directorate General of Press and Information <http://www.byegm.gov.tr>

Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning

01.05.2001


CONTENTS

  • [01] ECEVIT AND DERVIS TO ATTEND EUROPEAN ECONOMY SUMMIT
  • [02] SURPRISE VISIT FROM BENDIT AND SVOBODA
  • [03] PREPARATIONS UNDERWAY FOR MAY DAY MARCHES
  • [04] ANOTHER STEP FOR TURKISH-JORDANIAN COOPERATION
  • [05] ISRAELI ARMY COMMANDER VISITS TURKISH COUNTERPART
  • [06] "TERRORISM DECLINED IN TURKEY"
  • [07] TRAINING PROGRAM ON FIGHT AGAINST DRUGS
  • [08] WORLD MINING CONGRESS TO BE HELD IN TURKEY NEXT YEAR
  • [09] EUROPEAN CITY AWARD TO IZMIT
  • [10] CILLER TRAVELS TO THE US
  • [11] YILMAZ'S STATEMENT ON TURKEY'S ACCESSION PERIOD TO THE EU
  • [12] FIRST PRIVATE NATURAL GAS TERMINAL
  • [13] KOHLER: "RESPONSIBILITY BELONGS TO TURKEY"
  • [14] ORAL: "EXPORT-BOLSTERING MEASURES ARE IMMINENT"
  • [15] CAVALLO'S WARM MESSAGE
  • [16] MANGOLD'S STATEMENT
  • [17] SCHREMPP:'WE SHOULD SUPPORT TURKEY'
  • [18] DECLARATION OF HOLDINGS
  • [19] TREASURY BIDDING
  • [20] MONETARY PROGRAM TO BE ANNOUNCED
  • [21] CURRENCY RATES DECLINE AS DERVIS SAID
  • [22] GM AWARDS TO TURKISH FIRMS
  • [23] FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
  • [24] DID WE FORGET THE EU? BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)

  • [01] ECEVIT AND DERVIS TO ATTEND EUROPEAN ECONOMY SUMMIT

    The European Economy Summit will be held on July 1-3 in Salzburg, Austria. Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and State Minister Kemal Dervis are expected to participate in the meeting to be hosted by Austrian President Thomas Klestil. The main topic of the meeting will be the enlargement process of the European Union. /Turkiye/

    [02] SURPRISE VISIT FROM BENDIT AND SVOBODA

    European Parliament's member of the Greens Group, Daniel Cohn Bendit and the Socialist Group's reporter to Turkey, Hannes Svoboda came to Ankara. These European parliamentarians met the Turkish Minister of Justice, Hikmet Sami Turk, yesterday. They will meet with the Deputy Prime Ministers Mesut Yilmaz and Husamettin Ozkan today. It was stated that Bendit and Svodoba also requested appointment from the Minister of the Interior, Sadettin Tantan. /Sabah/

    [03] PREPARATIONS UNDERWAY FOR MAY DAY MARCHES

    Some tens of thousands of people are expected to march all over Turkey to mark the May Day. In an effort to prevent any violence, police have taken high security measures on the avenues of big cities such as Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir. In Ankara, thousands will gather today in Tandogan Square. According to the information received from the police, 3,800 police will be on duty. In case of an emergency, additional security personnel will join forces with them. /Turkish Daily News/

    [04] ANOTHER STEP FOR TURKISH-JORDANIAN COOPERATION

    Turkey and Jordan have taken another step to strengthen relations in the fields of cultural and scientific cooperation. The two countries have enjoyed close relations in the Middle East unlike some other Arab countries which severely criticized growing Turkish-Israeli bilateral relations. The latest step came in the field of culture as Jordan and Turkey agreed yesterday on closer cultural and scientific cooperation, setting the stage for exchanging information on their rich folkloric traditions and archaeological sites. /Turkish Daily News/

    [05] ISRAELI ARMY COMMANDER VISITS TURKISH COUNTERPART

    Israeli Land Forces Commander Staff Gen. Iftah Ron-Tal visited Turkish Land Forces Commander Gen. Sener Eruygur yesterday. The guest commander was welcomed by Eruygur at a ceremony to mark his arrival at the Turkish Land Force Headquarters. /Turkish News/

    [06] "TERRORISM DECLINED IN TURKEY"

    The US Department of State's annual report regarding the global terrorism pointed to a decrease in the number of terrorist activities in Turkey last year. The report said, terrorist activities have declined due to Turkey's successful and determined struggles. It emphasized, however, terrorist groups' threats against Turkey are continuing. Regarding the PKK and Hizbullah terrorist organizations, the report said Turkish security forces dealt great blows on those organizations during last year's operations. /Turkiye/

    [07] TRAINING PROGRAM ON FIGHT AGAINST DRUGS

    The third regional training program on fight against drugs and organized crimes has begun. 18 security officials from Azerbaijan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Georgia, Croatia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldovia, Uzbekistan, Romania, Russian Federation, Slovakia, Tajikistan, Ukrania and Greece are attending the program to end on May 11. /Turkiye/

    [08] WORLD MINING CONGRESS TO BE HELD IN TURKEY NEXT YEAR

    The World Mining Congress' 82nd International Organization Committee's meeting was decided to be held in Turkey next year. During the last meeting of the committee, held in Morocco on April 17-20, the proposal which envisages next meeting to be held in Antalya on Oct. 7, 2002 was accepted. More than 200 representatives from 50 countries are expected to join the meeting. /Turkiye/

    [09] EUROPEAN CITY AWARD TO IZMIT

    Parliamentarians Assembly of the Council of Europe presented the Honor Flag Award this year to Izmit which was largely destroyed by the Marmara Earthquake. The decision which meant Izmit was declared as an European city was conveyed to Izmit Mayor Sefa Sirmen. Chairman of Award Committee Franciszek Adamcyzk sent a letter to Sirmen stating the award aimed to improve solidarity among the European cities. /Milliyet/

    [10] CILLER TRAVELS TO THE US

    The Leader of True Path Party (DYP) Tansu Ciller will travel to the US. A DYP delegation including Deputy Chairman Ufuk Soylemez is expected to accompany her. Ciller is expected to sound the US intentions about recent developments in Turkey. /Cumhuriyet/

    [11] YILMAZ'S STATEMENT ON TURKEY'S ACCESSION PERIOD TO THE EU

    Delivering a speech at the "Turkey and Europe" seminar organized by DaimlerChrysler Firm, Deputy Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz said Turkey aimed to reach the necessary level to begin full membership negotiations within three years. Stating National Programme was an outcome of both Turkish and foreign accord, Yilmaz said this program belongs to Turkey, not only to a single government. Yilmaz stated economic relations were the locomotive of Turco-EU relations. Arguing attempts towards becoming a full EU member were an important opportunity for Turkey to overcome all her problems, Yilmaz added Turkey demands to realize her short-term objectives within a year and long-term ones in the possible shortest time. Stating Turkey wanted to transform the crisis to an opportunity he also claimed National Program and new economic program complement each other. /Cumhuriyet/

    [12] FIRST PRIVATE NATURAL GAS TERMINAL

    Turkey's first private initiative concerning natural gas market, Egegaz Joint Stock Company Aliaga Natural Gas Terminal will open by the second half of 2001. The Terminal was introduced to the press by the representatives from American E-Tech firm and Egegaz Joint Stock Company. /Cumhuriyet/

    $7 BILLION IN TWO MONTHS

    Almost half of the $14.3 billion extended by the IMF will be received in next two months. State Minister for the Economy, Kemal Dervis, said the IMF will release $3.9 billion portion of the credit if it approves the letter of intent in May. The amount which will be received from the IMF will reach $6 billion in June. A $1.1 billion will be obtained also from World Bank as program and project credits. The internal report prepared with regard to the letter of intent by the IMF will be not be kept confidential, rather it will be released in accordance with the principle of transparency. /Milliyet/

    [13] KOHLER: "RESPONSIBILITY BELONGS TO TURKEY"

    At a press conference following the IMF Finance Committee meeting, IMF Chairman Horst Kohler said, "The economic program is Turkey's. The responsibility for its implementation belongs to the Turkish government. We fully support the program." Meanwhile, International Monetary and Finance Committee (IMFC) affiliated to the IMF praised Turkey's new economic program and said the program deserves international finance sector's support. /Turkiye/

    [14] ORAL: "EXPORT-BOLSTERING MEASURES ARE IMMINENT"

    The government hopes to benefit from exports and it is planning to bolster the export sector with new regulations, Finance Minister Sumer Oral said yesterday. The new regulations will come into effect through a decree over the next few days. Oral said delays in value-added tax (VAT) repayments was the most urgent problem of exporters, and the government was considering new regulations to stop these delays. The Finance Ministry hopes to ease joint liability in VAT repayments and it wants to speed up the repayments, said Oral. Teams of auditors, accountants and inspectors will work to accelerate VAT repayments. The teams will focus on eliminating the repayments which have been left from previous periods. The measures will come into effect over the next few days, stated Oral. Export companies which make their payments through banks will be more comfortable with regards to VAT repayments. /Turkish News/

    [15] CAVALLO'S WARM MESSAGE

    During the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) and the World Bank's spring meetings in Washington, the Argentine Economy Minister, Domingo Cavallo, and the Turkish State Minister Responsible for the Economy, Kemal Dervis, were among the names who were mostly spoken about. Cavallo spoke to 'Hurriyet' daily and said, "I met Dervis during a banquet where he made presentations. I viewed Dervis as perfect, I hope he also liked my speech. Dervis prepared a very consistent economic program and also ensured the support of the International Monetary Fund (IMF). I believe that he and the economic program he prepared will be successful." Meanwhile, the Chairman of the IMF, Horst Kohler, said it is very likely that the economic program prepared by Dervis will be successful. /Hurriyet/

    [16] MANGOLD'S STATEMENT

    Member of the Executive Board of DaimlerChrysler Group of Services, Dr. Klaus Mangold, resembled Turkey to a treasury waiting to be uncovered. Mangold, stating that he was considering Turkey's future as bright, added, "The dynamic and young population is among the elements that should be taken into consideration by the foreign investors. The foreign investments will begin to develop thanks to the structural precautions taken by the government and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) loans. Turkey's location is also a decisive bridge in terms of economy between Asia and Europe." /Hurriyet/

    [17] SCHREMPP:'WE SHOULD SUPPORT TURKEY'

    The head of Daimler Chrysler, Jurgen E. Schrempp said his company has confidence in Turkey and Europe should also support Turkey. Schrempp delivered a speech prior to the concert of Berlin Philharmonia Orchestra yesterday in Istanbul. Schrempp said, "Europe with all its global companies like Daimler Chrysler should extend support to Turkey. Turkey is both a geographical and cultural bridge between East and West. We should do our best in this transition period, so that Turkey can be a full EU member." /Milliyet/

    [18] DECLARATION OF HOLDINGS

    The heads of Koc Holding, Dogan Holding, Eczacibasi Holding, Isbank, Sabanci Holding, Dogus Holding, Cukurova Holding, Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchange(TOBB), Turkish Association of Industrialists and Businessmen(TUSIAD), Turkish Employers Union Confederation(TISK) and Istanbul Chamber of Industry(IS0) convened yesterday to evaluate current political and economic conditions in Turkey. Following the meeting they issued a joint declaration. The declaration said, "Though positive developments occured in Turkish economy recently, the economy is still very fragile. Serious measures should be taken and implemented. No effort was spent until now to solve the problems concerning employment, production, exports and our competitive power. Turkish industrialists felt compelled to invest abroad and no measures were taken to prevent the outflow of foreign capital. We appreciate the structural reform effort of the government and Parliament, but it is a shortcoming not to receive Turkish private sector's views on these programs. A rather limited progress has been made in privatization so far. Therefore, the privatization calendar should be designed immediately and finalized. The enactment of the new Banking Law without consulting with the Banks' Union and resorting to the principles of rule of law would give irreparable damage to the economy. A joint commission comprising of the technical staff of TOBB, TUSIAD and TISK will prepare a draft on the possible amendments to the Constitution, Parties' Law, Election Laws and this draft will be discussed at next meetings." /Milliyet/

    [19] TREASURY BIDDING

    The Treasury announced its borrowing program and said it would redeem 5 quadrillion TL and will borrow a minimum of 5 quadrillion TL through five biddings. The Treasury will organize another bidding at the end of the month and extend the term to 392 days. However, the amount of its borrowing during this bidding has not been announced yet. /Sabah/

    [20] MONETARY PROGRAM TO BE ANNOUNCED

    The Central Bank will announce the monetary program in two weeks. Governor of the Central Bank, Sureyya Serdengecti, made an explanation in Washington, where he went to attend the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank meetings, and said, "Parallel to the discussion of the letter of intent by the IMF, the monetary program will be announced until the end of May. We aim to ensure the liquidity of the markets in the short term. We can make a limited intervention in the fluctuation of the foreign exchange. However, it should not be expected from the Central Bank to determine the foreign exchange and interest rates. /Milliyet/

    DEMIRBANK BIDDING EXTENDED UNTIL JUNE 18

    Turkey's Savings Deposit Insurance Fund (TMSF) announced yesterday that it has extended a bidding deadline for Demirbank, one of the 13 banks under administration, until June 18. The authority was expected to conclude the bidding process by the end of April. "Some of the investors interested in Demirbank have demanded extra time to prepare their final bids," the TMSF said explaining its move. The fund announced yesterday that the Military Pensioners' Fund (OYAK) was also allowed to partake in the Demirbank bid. /Turkish Daily News/

    [21] CURRENCY RATES DECLINE AS DERVIS SAID

    Following the announcement of the new economic program, financial markets settled down after the second economic crisis in February. The Istanbul Stock Exchange Index rose by 54 % in a month. The dollar parity declined from 1,300,000TL to 1,148,000TL. /Milliyet/

    [22] GM AWARDS TO TURKISH FIRMS

    Three Turkish firms received General Motors (GM) International Supplementary Industry Award. It was stated 165 firms from 20 countries were awarded this year. /Cumhuriyet/

    152 BIRD SPECIES OBSERVED IN KAYSERI

    Erciyes University Birdwatching Club (ERKUS) stated that 152 bird species had been observed in Kayseri last year. Environmental Engineering Faculty Professor Uygar Ozesmi stated all observation reports had been gathered and a book had been published. /Turkish News/

    [23] FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...

    [24] DID WE FORGET THE EU? BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)

    Columnist Sami Kohen writes on the effect of the economic crisis on the priorities of Turkey. A summary of his column is as follows:

    "Due to the economic crisis the membership to the EU is almost forgotten. There is no talk of the National Programme considered to be the road map for EU membership and consequently the reforms which have to be carried out for this purpose...It is natural for the severe economic crisis to shove other issues aside. However, there is a close tie between the National Program prepared for the EU and the economic program to overcome the crisis. The two programs are in complete harmony. The economic and political reforms have to be implemented together.The recent crisis has provided an historic opportunity to realize this necessity and to act resolutely. A seminar organized by DaimlerChrysler Co., in Istanbul titled "Turkey and Europe" discussed this issue. The statement by EU Commissioner for Enlargement Gunter Verheugen was read by his deputy and covered important messages. Verheugen said that Turkey must implement political reforms to enter the road for full EU membership and comply with the Copenhagen criteria without any reservations. Within this context, Verheugen said that the EU expected Turkey to end the hunger strikes in the prisons going on for months. Another issue mentioned by Verheugen was Cyprus. The EU Commissioner did not hide his concern over the issue and said that time factor was gaining more importance by each passing day. An official close to Verheugen said that a year later the EU would take up the membership issue of Cyprus and decide on it. If there is no progress on the problem, only the membership of the Greek Cypriot Administration could be taken up.

    The conclusion reached after the speeches delivered by Deputy Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz and member of the EU Parliament Renate Sommer is that there is still a difference of mentality between Turkey and the EU. Turkey is determined to integrate with the EU. However, she wants to implement the reforms in the time periods mentioned in the National Program. The obstacles put by those who are against this integration have not been overcome yet. Turkey expects the EU to understand her dilemma and give her a chance by lending her support.On the other hand, the EU expects Turkey to adhere to the conditions set for EU membership to the letter and act flexibly on the Cyprus issue. Verheugen and other diplomats are expressing this desire in a softer tone while Dr. Sommer puts it more bluntly. She says that all candidates are equal and no privilege can be recognized to Turkey. This is the lastest situation on the road to the EU."


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