UPDATE WITH MORE REMARKS FROM PRESIDENT ERDOGAN
By Aysu Bicer
ANKARA (AA) - The economic climate in Turkey will be "completely different" this summer when the financial system has reached a balance, the country's president said on Friday.
At a meeting with members of the press and academia at the Presidential Dolmabahce Office in Istanbul, Recep Tayyip Erdogan called for academics and economists to contribute to the government's new economic model by formulating solutions and providing guidance.
He said Turkey had launched a historic change in economic policy, putting aside the classical understanding of controlling inflation with high interest rates.
"Rather, it has adopted an economic policy based on growing the country with investment, employment, production, exports, and current surplus," he explained.
"We'll continue on our way with the same determination from now on," said the Turkish president, adding that "things are going perfectly on the production and employment side of our economy."
He also underlined that the government has not had any budgetary problems and was not seeking assistance from the IMF. "At the moment, we have no debt to the IMF, nor do we have any contact with the IMF," he stressed.
Highlighting that economic indicators showed that the time was right for this new policy, Erdogan said: "We aim to place Turkey among the 10 largest economies of the world on this strong groundwork."
Noting that the foreign exchange reserves of Turkey's Central Bank currently stood at over $115 billion, Erdogan said: "This amount will be in a much better position. Today, Turkey has the infrastructure it needs in every field from education to health, from security to law, from industry to tourism."
Turkey's government has argued that a recent surge in exchange rates ignores the country's strong economic fundamentals, blaming high prices on hoarders and global factors. The benefits of Turkey's new approach will become clear in the next three to six months, according to Erdogan.