Turkish central bank replaces chief as Lira sees record lows


People walk at a rate showing a screen at a currency exchange agency near Grand Bazaar in Istanbul on September 24, 2020.

OZAN ​​KOSE | AFP | Getty Images

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday dismissed the head of the country’s central bank after a period of high inflation and record lows for the lira.

Former Finance Minister Neki Agbal was replaced by Murat Uysal, according to the President’s decree announced in the official gazette.

The decision came after the lira lost nearly a third of its value since the beginning of the year – hitting a record low of 8.58 against the US dollar on Friday – and annual inflation was 11.89%.

Uysal was appointed as the chairman of the central bank in July 2019 after his predecessor failed to cut interest rates to boost the economy.

Erdogan refuted the established economic doctrine by asking for a rate cut that higher rates could curb inflation. Last weekend he described interest and exchange rates and inflation as “the devil’s triangle”.

Erdogan and the country’s finance minister, his son-in-law Berat Albrek, have often accused Turkey of economic woes on foreign powers.

Agbal was appointed from his previous position as head of the President’s Strategy and Budget Directorate. He served as Finance Minister from 2015 to 2018.

As his new role, Turkey fears relations with the US should deteriorate, Democratic candidate Joe Biden should win the presidential race.

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