Turkish Ambassador gives TRNC’s 2012 Economy Report

Turkish Ambassador to the TRNC, Halil Akca delivered his report on the TRNC economy last night. The report was prepared independently by Turkey.

Mr Akca said that over the last 3 years, growth had totalled 10.4%, which was low.

He then went on to say that the economic programme for the next three years had been signed between Turkey and the TRNC but that some elements in Cyprus were now looking to dispute it. He said that these elements were trying to maintain the status quo and wanted to overlook the real problems within the TRNC.

Mr Akca said that the most important issue facing the TRNC was commitment to the economic programme.

He said that elements against the plan were claiming that Turkey had installed the programme so that it could reduce payments to the TRNC. They also claimed that money from Turkey went to Turkish citizens in the TRNC and that prices were double that of Turkey.

Mr Akca felt that propaganda along these lines had been partially successful and had resulted in a weak implementation of the agreed economic programme so far. He felt that this was the reason for the lower than expected growth.

However, Mr Akca said that there were encouraging signs that the bloated public sector was shrinking and that growth coming from the tourism, education and agriculture sectors was on the rise.

The new economic programme for 2013-2015 would result in the privatisation of the electricity, telecommunication and transport sectors. The state banks would be reformed and the civil service would be overhauled.

He said that if these reforms went through, then the economy of the TRNC would be much stronger and could then surpass the performance of the South.

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