ALERT: Turkish lira crisis may put the naira at risk

The two governments have been at odds over a wide range of topics - from diverging interests in Syria, to Turkey's ambition to buy Russian defense systems and the case of evangelical pastor Andrew Brunson, who is on trial in Turkey on terrorism charges.

The call happened after U.S. President Donald Trump said he had authorised higher tariffs on imports from Turkey, imposing a 20 percent duty on aluminium and 50 percent one on steel.

Erdogan on Friday appealed for calm and called on people to change foreign money into local lira.

"Section 232 tariffs are imposed on imports from particular countries whose exports threaten to impair national security as defined in Section 232, independent of negotiations on trade or any other matter", White House deputy press secretary Lindsay Walters said in a statement.

Trump pointed out on Twitter that the lira was not doing well, but one of Erdogan's economic advisers, Yigit Bulut, responded that the sell-off in the lira had caused $300 billion in losses in the USA stock market. The entire Turkish public is against USA policies that disregard Turkey's legitimate security demands.

"If there is anyone who has dollars or gold under their pillows, they should go exchange it for liras at our banks. Failure to reverse this trend of unilateralism and disrespect will require us to start looking for new friends and allies", President Erdogan said.

In March, the USA had imposed tariffs of 25 per cent on steel and 10 per cent on aluminum for imports from a variety of countries.

Edward Price, a former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) officer who retired from the CIA refusing to work for the Trump administration, said the administration, in order to bring back Brunson, should fill the vacant USA ambassador's post in Turkey instead of levying tariffs that will ultimately have to be borne by Americans.

It will immediately affect USA branches of Turkish steel-makers, such as Borusan Mannesmann, a Turkish-owned manufacturer that imports steel pipes from its parent company and finishes them at its plant in Baytown, Texas.

President Erdogan's spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said Turkey's efforts to solve the crisis with diplomatic methods have been dismissed by The Trump Administration, warning that Washington could lose Ankara as an ally. The U.S. has fallen from Turkey's main steel buyer to No. 3.

The US was one of the top destination for Turkish steel exports in 2017, worth $1.1 billion.

The American-Turkish Council urged Turkey and the United States to maintain dialogue and to return to the negotiating table late Monday. This article is strictly for informational purposes only.

Berat Albayrak, Turkey's treasury and finance minister, sought at a news conference Friday in Istanbul to ease investor concerns about Turkey's econom.


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