ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Turkish Lira plunged in value against the US Dollar to a new all-time low of 5.01 on Wednesday evening in a seismic reaction to reports that Washington has prepared a list of individuals and entities to target should it proceed with plans to impose sanctions on President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government.
On a steep decline since the beginning of the year, the currency lost as much as two percent of its value after American finance data provider Bloomberg reported that the US sanctions hit the Turkish Minister of Justice Abdulhamit Gul and Minister of Interior Suleyman Soylu.
The Lira was already under heavy pressure due to expected punitive measures against Ankara by the Trump administration over the continued detention and prosecution of American Pastor Andrew Brunson for alleged collaboration with coup-plotters and Kurdish rebels.
Turkey’s economic outlook has been moving downward. The past month saw the country’s nominally independent Central Bank come under more influence of Erdogan, a self-declared “enemy of interest rates” as he appointed his son-in-law Berat Albayrak to the combined post of Ministry of Finance and Treasury that now has the sole power to name the bank’s governor.
Since the new cabinet’s announcement three weeks ago, the bank has resisted raising interest rates and revised its annual inflation forecast to 13.4, five points higher than it had predicted in April, two moves that resulted in the further sinking of the Lira.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany