Turkey discharged its debt to the IMF in May, by paying a final installment of $421 million after decades of loans and stand-by arrangements (see Update 83). Turkish deputy prime minister Ali Babacan said “recently, advanced countries have also started to receive IMF loans. Turkey will also change the picture by paying the last part of its debt”. Commenting on the repayment Özlem Onaran from the University of Greenwich said “the government has recently taken pride in having paid the last installment of its debt to the IMF. However, in the last decade Turkey has borrowed increasingly more in the international financial markets [whilst] private sector foreign debt has reached unforeseen levels. The government has continued Turkey’s neoliberal speculation and finance-led growth model with dramatic social costs as the recent mobilisations have shown. This is a fragile model as we know it. The next bust and crisis in Turkey is not a question of ‘if’ but ‘when’, and the international financial investors will make that decision.”
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