Ekonomisk riskbedömning
Turkey

Turkey

Population 78.1 million
GDP 9,186 US$
B
Country risk assessment
A4
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Synthesis

major macro economic indicators

  2014 2015  2016 (f) 2017 (f)
GDP growth (%) 5,2 6.1 2.9 2.7
Inflation (yearly average) (%) 7,0 7.7 7.8 10.1
Budget balance (% GDP) -2,0 -1.2 -2.3 -3.0
Current account balance (% GDP) -6,1 -3.7 -3.8 -4.6
Public debt (% GDP) 34,9 27.6 29.1 29.8

 

(e) Estimate (f) Forecast

STRENGTHS

  • Demographic vitality
  • A market with 80m inhabitants and a growing middle class
  • A pivotal regional position, especially for gas (TANAP, Turkstream)
  • Customs union with the EU

WEAKNESSES

  • High current account deficit and low domestic savings
  • Dependence on foreign capital
  • Delicate domestic and external political situation (Kurds, Syria and Iraq, attempted coup)
  • Authoritarian drift of government
  • The eastern part of the country is lagging behind

RISK ASSESSMENT

Growth below potential:

GDP growth is expected to remain stable at 2.7% in 2017. External trade, household consumption and public spending are the main drivers. First, the depreciation of the lira should encourage exports. However, gains are likely to be partly offset by[SI1]  higher import prices, in particular for energy. In addition, private consumption should be boosted by consumer confidence, which has improved significantly since the beginning of the year. However, its growth is expected to be capped by lower wage dynamics, the high unemployment rate (13% in January, the highest rate in seven years) and inflation, which is expected to increase significantly due to the depreciation of the lira, higher prices in energy, food, clothing and transportation. Despite its strong rebound since January, the central bank has decided not to raise most of its key interest rates at its meeting on 26 April. However, the "late liquidity window" overnight lending rate rose from 11.75% to 12.25%.

In 2017, public expenditures (health, pensions, social spending) will grow to encourage consumption and investment. They increased by 45% over the period January-April 2017 compared to the previous year. In addition, privately funded infrastructure projects, in partnership with the Turkish state, in transport (Istanbul New Airport), energy (TANAP Project) and health, may drive growth. While investor confidence has improved since the beginning of the year, terrorist attacks and political uncertainty[SI2]  remain an important concern and have considerably affected the tourism sector.

 

Strong public accounts, significant external deficits:

The public deficit is expected to increase from 2.3% GDP in 2016 to 3.0% GDP in 2017. In the first 4 months of 2017, revenues totalled $ 55.6 billion (increase of 9% in one year). At the same time, spending totalled $ 60.6 billion (increase of 22.5% in one year). The increase in revenues reflects a recovery in consumption, production and growth; the rise in spending shows the will of the government to support national growth.

The current account deficit remains sustainable even if it should increase. The trade deficit (4.8% of GDP in 2016) should slightly widen. The increase in exports, due to the strength of the European demand and the depreciation of the lira, will be offset by higher prices for energy imports and for components used in the manufacture of exports. The services balance surplus (1.8% of GDP in 2016) will remain weak, as the gradual return of Russian tourists is not sufficient to outweigh the loss of European visitors.  

The activity remains dependent on foreign financing, due to the weakness of national savings (14% of GDP). The country's external debt is expected to increase by 5.6% between 2016 and 2017, just like its weight in GDP (47.1% in 2016). Yet, inflows of FDI remain limited (1% of GDP in 2016).

 

Tense geopolitical situation:

After the failed coup  of July 15th 2016 and the introduction of the state of emergency, economic and political uncertainties increased. On April 16th 2017, the referendum for the constitutional change was approved at 51.4%, granting more powers to President Erdogan. Although the reaction of the markets has been rather positive, the possibility of early elections weighs on domestic and foreign investment intentions.

Breaches to the rule of law, the ambiguous and uncertain relationship between Turkey and the EU, tensions in the south-east of the country, military operations in neighbouring countries and anticipated changes in the US monetary policy are likely to weigh on the economy. Positive signs exist: return to normal relations with Israel, Russia and Egypt, the end to international sanctions against Iran, the construction of gas pipelines, reform of the job market or acceleration of company creation formalities.

 

 

Last update : June 2017

Payment

 

In the domestic market, traditional instruments for credit payment are still in common use as they not only constitute a means of payment but also can often serve as negotiable instruments.

 

This is the case for promissory notes in regular use for commercial transactions by smaller and medium-sized companies. Similarly, with the postdating of cheques a commonplace practice, the cheque serves as both a title of payment and a credit instrument. Cheques circulate in the domestic market as negotiable instruments until the maturity date.

 

The new law on cheques, in force since December 2009, focuses on protection of the rights of cheque holders (beneficiaries) and institutes three categories of cheques – cheques for business users, cheques for consumers, and pre-printed bearer cheques – to facilitate tracking this payment instrument and to combat the underground economy.

 

Although banks are now required to exercise greater vigilance as regard the profile of their clients, the law also provides for large financial sanctions payable by the drawer of the cheque in case of non-payment.

Likewise, according to the amendment on 3 February 2012, the drawer of a dishonoured cheque will be banned from drawing cheques and / or opening cheque accounts for 10 years, by decision of the public prosecutor (administrative sanction instead of penal sanction).

 

There are, as such, particular advantages deriving to creditors from the use of negotiable instruments like bills of exchange, promissory notes, and cheques – provided they have been duly established and that any legal action is taken within the legal limitation period. They enable creditors, without obtaining a prior ruling, to approach directly the enforcement office (Icra Dairesi) for service on the debtor of an injunction to pay and then, as necessary, to proceed with the seizure of the debtor’s assets.

 

The debtor has 10 days to settle the arrears in question or 5 days to approach the enforcement court and to oppose payment on grounds that, for example, the signature on the document is not his own or that the debt no longer exists. In case of opposition on abusive grounds, the debtor is liable to large penalties.

 

Finally, for rapid and secure processing of bank transfers, the SWIFT electronic network is well-established in Turkish banking circles and constitutes the most commonly used instrument for international payments.

 

Debt Collection

 

Out of court settlement is always advisable to taking legal action, and as a result, the sending of formal notice to pay, followed up by repeated telephone calls, remains a relatively effective method. As well, on-site visits can moreover pave the way for restoring communication between the supplier and his customer and thereby enhance the chances for negotiating a transaction.

 

Depending on the debtor's solvency, the terms the transaction can range from payment in full to repayment by instalments, or even to a partial payment as final settlement.

 

In the absence of a voluntary settlement, the threat of a bankruptcy petition (iflâs) is a frequently employed tactic to elicit a response from the debtor and prompt him to repay the arrears.

 

In cases where the validity of the claim is disputed, the only recourse is to initiate the ordinary proceedings via a summons to appear in court.

 

In cases whereTurkeyhas not signed a bilateral treaty or a reciprocity treaty with the plaintiff’s country, the plaintiff will be required to put up a surety bond,judicatum solvi, representing about 15 % of the claim, with the competent local court. It's the same with a Turkish applicant who has no permanent residence inTurkey.

 

At the commencement of the proceedings as well, the plaintiff must also put up one quarter of the court fees, which are proportional to the amount of the claim.

 

The ordinary proceedings are organized in three phases: first phase involving position statements by each party (statement of claim and statement of defence); then in a second and longer phase, the court investigates the case, examining the relevance of the evidence submitted, whether conclusive or discretionary evidence ; and finally in the main hearing that constitute the third phase, the court hears the parties and their lawyers and issues a ruling.

 

The civil procedure code specifically states that the judge may at any time during the legal action encourage amicable settlement of the dispute, provided that it results from a real desire by the parties to seek an out-of-court settlement via a negotiated transaction.

 

The “LAW ON MEDIATION IN CIVIL DISPUTES” (Law No. 6325) has entered into force completely on June 22,2013. The Law stipulates that mediation shall be applied only in the resolution of private law conflicts, including those having a foreignness element, arising from acts or transactions of interested parties who have the capacity to settle such conflicts.

 

In this context; mediation is defined as “a method of voluntary dispute resolution system carried out with the intervention of an impartial and independent third party who is specially trained to convene the relevant parties by way of systemic techniques and with a view to help such parties mutually understand and reach a resolution through a process of communication”.

Mediation is, first of all, is a dispute resolution system. However, this resolution system is a voluntary dispute method.

 

Here, the parties create their own ways of solution by themselves and they try to understand each other while doing this. Mediation is based on the principle of doing meetings and negotiations and is entirely a process of communication. While the parties are creating their own ways of solution, an impartial and independent third party (a mediator) who enables the parties to establish communication, have meetings, understand each other shall be included in the process.

 

On the other hand, the parties are free to apply to a mediator, to continue the process, to finalize or to abandon the process.The parties may also settle on the issue of applying to a mediator before the filing a lawsuit or while the lawsuit is pending; and the court may advise, encourage the parties to apply to a mediator.

 

The commercial court (asliye ticaret mahkemeleri), which is a specialized chamber of the court of first instance, is competent to hear commercial disputes and insolvency proceedings. Commercial courts exist in the main Turkish cities.

 

To combat against lengthy lawsuits and courts workload, the new civil procedure code, effective as of 1st October 2011, aim to accelerate and simplify the proceedings.

 

Also, the parties have to submit their arguments of defence, their counter claims and available evidence at the commencement of the trial. These documents will be reviewed by the court during a preliminary hearing, in the course of which the parties will be encouraged to compromise.

 

The litigants’ examinations and cross examinations will now be conducted by lawyers to discharge the judges who had so far a great tendency to resort to expert opinions to assist them in the content of the judgment. That is why, the new code limits the list of technical and scientific experts registered with the Ministry of Justice.

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