Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia

Salisbury CW Attack / Syria / Iran / Russia Ad Hoc Update (121)


Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

Russia may ditch using the dollar for oil trading, instead may use “national currencies”.  RT, Russia may ditch dollar in oil trade as it is too risky – finance minister:

The US dollar is not a reliable tool for payments in international trade, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov told Russian media. Payments in national currencies might be used instead, he said.

Let’s see if I understand this. The ruble is crashing, currently at 67.8975 rubles for one dollar.  The ruble is becoming worthless and Russia wants to start basing their main export on the ruble?  It would take a lot of arm-twisting on Russia’s part to make that happen, beyond the short term. I would even make the bet that Europe would suddenly find ways to find alternative energy sources, further crushing Russia’s economy.  I cannot see a win-win situation for Russia out of this.  

The information aspect for Russia’s switching to the ruble would be a crushing defeat for Russia. They would be committing middle and long-term economic suicide for a short-term boost. With alternative energy use on the rise and Russia remaining firmly in the 20th century with basing their economy largely on petroleum, they will be going in the wrong direction. Russia will clearly be seen as making a very wrong decision causing irrevocable damage.

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Yet another installment of Russia/Iran/Turkey threaten/bluster/bluff as economy/currency/stocks nosedive/crash/tank. Some of the statements emanating from Muscovy verge upon the truly delusional. Interesting analyses by Ikhlov, Goble and Shelin.

UK CT police having to guard locally resident Russian emigres who might be at risk.

Reports Iran intends to ship enriched Uranium from Russia back to Iran.


UAWire – Russian ruble wiped out by capital outflow

The Russian currency market continues to sink due to the risk of sanctions and the outflow of foreign capital, finanz.ru reports. After gaining 2.05 rubles on Wednesday, 1.11 on Thursday, the US dollar gained a further 1.24 rubles during trade on Friday, reaching 67.8975 rubles, the highest since April 18, 2016. The euro appreciated by 48 kopeks for the day and 3.11 rubles since the start of the week, updating its 4-month high to 77.43 rubles. There is a growing lack of foreign currency in the market: the cumulative number of asks registered on the exchange dropped to $22 million at the end of the main session, one-fifth of the average value for recent months. Alongside the risk of anti-Russian sanctions, emerging markets have been affected by the fire raging on the Turkish economy, observed analyst from Freedom Finance Anastasia Sosnova. The Turkish lira depreciated by 20% in a day after US President Donald Trump, who had already placed sanctions on Turkish officials, announced a twofold increase in the tariffs on steel and aluminum from the country. Turkish President Recep Erdogan responded by promising that Turkey “will not be brought to its knees” by “economic manipulations”. The Turkish crisis has caused EM currencies to drop – investors are withdrawing their money from funds focusing on emerging countries, according to senior analyst Richard Segal from Manulife Asset Management. Under the selling pressure, the South African Rand fell by 3%, the Brazilian real by 1.8%, and the MSCI index, which reflects the capitalization of the EM areas, by 2.03%. Sberbank securities dropped by a further 4.98% on the Moscow Exchange and by 6.06% in London. The RTS index lost 3.68%, hitting its lowest since April, and Russian government bonds hit a 15-month low according to the RGBI. Comments by the Russian Central Bank were unable to calm the market: the regulator announced that it would continue to buy currency for the Ministry of Finance and may “correct” the volume of operations only for a time, and that on the long-term horizon, there will be full-fledged intervention. “At present the government does not set itself the goal of avoiding a collapse of the ruble. And so they are not going to do anything,” said trader Pyotr Milovanov from Metallinvestbank.

TASS: Russian Politics & Diplomacy – Crimea was just excuse for anti-Russian sanctions, says diplomat

Maria Zakharova said that the United States are pursuing aggressive policy, «real trade wars»

Russia’s foreign ministry says Skripal case allegations ‘groundless’ | Reuters

Russia’s foreign ministry on Monday said allegations of Moscow’s involvement in the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal in the English town of Salisbury – an event which led to a new round of U.S. sanctions against Russia – were groundless.

Russia’s foreign ministry says Skripal case allegations &…

BRITAIN-POISON/SKRIPAL-RUSSIA (URGENT): Russia’s foreign ministry says Skripal case allegations

US Dollar Becoming Risky Instrument For Int’l Payments – Russian Minister – Sputnik International

The US dollar is becoming an unreliable tool for payments in international trade, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov stated in an interview.

Russia may ditch dollar in oil trade as it is too risky – finance minister — RT Business News

The US dollar is not a reliable tool for payments in international trade, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov told Russian media. Payments in national currencies might be used instead, he said.

Russia To Continue Slashing U.S. Bond Holdings, May Stop Payments In Dollars

Russia’s finance minister says his country will continue to reduce investments in U.S. government bonds and may stop making global payments in dollars in response to new sanctions being imposed b…

TASS: Business & Economy – Possible US sanctions unpleasant, but not fatal for Russian economy, says finance minister

Siluanov said that the Russian economy has adapted itself «to the sanction effects that we have been seeing over the recent years»

TASS: Business & Economy – Russia expects budget surplus of 1.5-2% of GDP and 1.8-2% GDP growth in 2018

Upwards dynamics will be further growing in the following years, says Minister of Finance Anton Siluanov

Russia’s top 5 trump cards in the sanctions game against the US — RT Business News

Washington’s reported plans to ratchet up sanctions against Moscow have sparked heated debates both in the US and in Russia over which country will be hurt more.

Russia plans to sell more US holdings in response to sanctions

Anton Siluanov also told state television network Russia One Sunday that more retaliation can be expected.

Putin has not yet ordered retaliatory sanctions against United States: Kremlin | Reuters

President Vladimir Putin has not yet ordered retaliatory sanctions against the United States because Washington has not yet introduced new restrictions on Moscow and it is unclear what those curbs will be, the Kremlin said on Monday.

Russia SHUNS US dollar for trade as it joins Turkey in protest against Trump | World | News | Express.co.uk

RUSSIA has announced it will shun the US dollar for trade as the nation joined forces with Turkey in protest of punishing sanctions hiked by Donald Trump.

Russia selling off US securities in wake of new sanctions | TheHill

Russia’s finance minister said Sunday that the country would lower its investment in U.S. securities, calling new sanctions from the Trump administration “unpleasant but not fatal.”

Russia says will ditch U.S. securities amid sanctions: RIA | Reuters

Russia will further decrease its holdings of U.S. securities in response to new sanctions against Moscow but has no plans to shut down U.S. companies in Russia, Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said on state TV on Sunday, RIA news agency reported.

Newest US sanctions against Russia hit an economic nerve – The Washington Post

Russia typically brushes off new U.S. sanctions. Not this time.

Russia Sanctions Won’t Work If Trump Doesn’t Back Them Up – Bloomberg

The president’s refusal to condemn Putin undermines any economic penalties.

Putin’s Wealth Shift Takes Aim at Russian Economy’s Idled Engine – Bloomberg

As the U.S. tightens the noose of sanctions, Russia’s new plan to rewire its economy is counting on old-style state-led investment to drive growth rather than consumers.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Economic Conditions for Most Russians are about to Get Much Worse, Analysts Say

Paul Goble Staunton, August 8 – Most Russians today are focusing on possible increases in pension ages, but they should be more worried about a larger and more immediate threat: an increase in inflation possibly to “explosive” levels as a result of international sanctions and government efforts to raise money, according to a group of Moscow financial analysts and financial experts. According to the group, which was assembled by the Rosbalt news agency, inflation will soon be accelerating because of increases in VAT and housing costs, higher prices for fuel, a decline in the price of oil, and a new wave of sanctions by the US, all of which will send prices up and the standard of living down (rosbalt.ru/russia/2018/08/08/1723017.html). Indeed, they suggest that inflation could rise to a level that would not only depress the average standard of living in Russia but send the economy into a tailspin because of the collapse of consumer spending, one of the most important factors except for the sale of raw materials which has been keeping the economy from slipping further into recession. Vadim Zhartun, head of the Nova Team consulting company, says that the Russian government’s decision to increase taxes to raise more revenue will “automatically affect” prices for communal services and do so at perhaps four times the current rate of inflation. And both developments will lead to more inflation and less economic growth. In his view, there is no reason now to speak about economic growth at all: “the small increase in GDP which Rosstat reports, is connected more with the lowering by agencies of official data about inflation than with a genuine improvement of economic circumstances” in Russia. Moreover, Zhartun continues, “all this is taking place at a time of unexpectedly high prices for oil” and that means the economy has no reserves. Consequently, if or more likely when oil prices fall, the economic crisis could become severe with double-digit inflation, a decline in GDP, a chain reaction of bankruptcies” and other bad news. “One must not say that raising the VAT will be the only or even the chief cause of this, but one can say that it will only worsen the situation. There is no doubt about that.” Stepan Demura, a financial and stock market analyst, agrees. Unavoidable increases in the costs of communal services will hit 80 percent of the population very hard, he says. The government has to know this because “all civilized countries lower taxes to stimulate the economy but Russia, judging by everything, has its own special path.” Vasily Koltashov, a political economist at the Institute for a New Society, says that the combination of higher VAT rates and rising communal service prices will “worsen the position of the consumer. And “this will occur under conditions when citizens even without this are suffering” from low wages or cutbacks. Government economists are correct when they say raising the VAT will not have horrific consequences by itself, “but if a new negative move begins in the world economy, if China reduces imports and weakens the yuan, if world oil prices fall and there is a new weakening of the ruble, not by five percent as now but more, then” the VAT increase will make things worse. Igor Nikoalyev, head of the FBC Institute for Strategic Analysis, says that new American sancitons will reduce the demand for rubles and the Russian currency will thus weaken. If the sanctions affect the Russian state debt, this will add to the downward pressure because no one will want to buy rubles. At the same time, he says, there will be fewer dollars offered and this will strengthen the US currency further weakening the Russian one. How much is an open question but it is obvious that the ruble is going to fall, inflation increase and the Russian economy and the Russian people suffer as a result. And Stepan Goncharov, a sociologist at the Levada Center, also expects the economy to worsen, inflation increase, and popular attitudes to deteriorate; but he says it remains unclear what if anything the population will do. Many in the regime expected more protests from the pension boost than have occurred; the same thing could happen again. But there is real dissatisfaction and it is deepening. At some point, “this could play a role when there appears, let us assume, an alternative political force which will try to play on these sharp issues. For the time being, however, leftwing and other opposition figures cannot channel this dissatisfaction and convert it into political success.” “It is possible,” Goncharov says, “that the opposition has not even made this task a priority.”

TASS: Russian Politics & Diplomacy – Russia ready for new summit of Russia, US presidents despite sanctions – Lavrov

Russian Foreign Minister said that Russia was ready to meet even with representatives from those countries whose policy towards Russia is unfriendly

Russia’s Lavrov says Putin-Trump meeting possible to improve relations: RIA

Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. President Donald Trump may meet if they feel the need to focus on improving relations, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Sunday, according to the RIA state news agency. “If the leaders feel the need to meet and get back to the questions that

War or Peace? – Sputnik International

American politicians provoke a slew of emotions, from tears of rage to tears of laughter. But perhaps the uppermost emotion is one of pity.

Leader of German Left Slams US ‘Aggressive Ways’, Urges Closer Ties With Russia – Sputnik International

Relations between Moscow and Brussels have deteriorated significantly since the coup in Ukraine led to Crimea’s reunification with Russia in 2014. After the US, EU and several countries sanctioned Russia over its alleged interference in Ukraine’s domestic affairs, Russia launched counter-sanctions.

The Aftermath of the Helsinki Summit

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin held a historic summit in Helsinki, Finland on July 15 that was assessed by many as a defeat for US prestige and interests. The summit should not, however, be construed as a Russian victory. US foreign policy moves after the summit indicate that there is little chance for meaningful improvement in bilateral relations. The complexity of issues surrounding Syria, Ukraine, Georgia, and Iran will continue to weigh heavily on US-Russian diplomatic efforts.

UAWire – Putin’s friend Prigozhin denies his connection with gold mining in Central Africa

Yevgeny Prigozhin has no interest in military or civil projects the Central African Republic, including gold mining, RBC news agency reports …

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Fertility Rates among Ethnic Russians to Remain Below Replacement Levels while Those among Non-Russians will Be Above Them

Paul Goble Staunton, August 10 – The Russian labor ministry projects that in 2020, fertility rates in predominantly ethnic Russian regions will remain well below the replacement level of 2.2 children per woman per lifetime while in non-Russian regions, including Tuva, the Altai and Chechnya, they will remain above, Izvestiya reports today. That means that the ethnic balance in the Russian Federation will continue to change even if fertility rates in some non-Russian regions are falling compared to what they were a generation ago, with the share of Russians declining and the share of non-Russians increasing in the future. Neither the labor ministry nor the newspaper’s Anna Ivushkina and Daniil Kuzin, however, stress this ethnic dimension, preferring instead to say that Russia expects “the highest coefficients of births in distant [but unnamed] regions of the country” (iz.ru/776263/anna-ivushkina-daniil-kuzin/demograficheskii-vzryv-v-sibiri-i-na-kavkaze-stanut-bolshe-rozhat). Overall, the ministry says, the countrywide fertility rate should rise from 1.62 now to 1.65 in 2020 on its way to 1.7 in 2024, all figures well below replacement levels. But even that boost will come from places at least some in Moscow will be less than thrilled by: Tuva with a projected rate of 3.4, Chechnya with 2.92, the Altair 2.9, and Buryatia, 2.28. All these unlike predominantly ethnic Russian regions where the figures are below 1.6 are non-Russian and non-Orthodox. A major driver of these differences, the paper says, is a radical difference in age structure. Predominantly ethnic Russian regions are far older on average, something that means there are fewer women in the prime child-bearing age cohorts than is the case in the much younger over all populations of these non-Russian regions. Given that demographic reality, the ethnic Russian regions are likely to experience a continuing decline in population while non-Russian republics in many cases are likely to continue to grow in size absolutely and relatively.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Empires Always Involve Imperialism, Something Many Russians Forget, Ikhlov Says

Paul Goble Staunton, August 12 – Many Russians condemn imperialism as a policy involving “the seizure, enslavement and theft of resources of subordinated people because being ‘a proud thief is not fashionable” but nonetheless defend empire as “a political organization of a multi-national (or better poly-cultural) space unified by a common civilizational idea,” Yevgeny Ikhlov says. Those who condemn the first while defending or even praising the second, the Russian commentator says, forget that “no empire exists without imperialism, even if the empire invests a very great deal in the development of the provinces and seriously raises the level of their development” (kasparov.ru/material.php?id=5B6EC8CD275E8). Not only does the metropolitan center invariably profit from its conquests on the periphery, but an empire affects both the periphery and the center in negative ways. It “deforms local societies and local economies,” and it produces “megalomania” among those who create and maintain the empire for their own benefit. Ikhlov’s comments are important for Russians because over the last few years, ever more Russians following Vladimir Putin, have expressed a positive view of empire even while condemning imperialism as if the two were entirely separate things. In fact, as he points out, they are not separate but intimately intertwined. But they are also important for non-Russians and for the West. For non-Russians, they are a reminder of the ways in which the Russian state as it has developed and is now celebrated by Putin is not only imperial in its nature but imperialist in its operations toward them and toward Russia’s neighbors. And for the West, it is an even more important warning that a regime which celebrates empire as Putin’s does is a continuing threat to the international system which as a result of the three great settlements of the 20th century is based on the nation state rather than the empire and on citizenship rather than ethnicity. For a broader discussion of these settlements and the ways in which Putin has been violating them, see this author’s “Crimea: A New 911 for the United States” at https://www.americanambassadors.org/publications/ambassadors-review/spring-2014/crimea-a-new-9-11-for-the-united-states.

Paul A. Goble | Crimea: A New 9/11 for the United States | Council of American Ambassadors

In 1991, with the end of the Cold War, the disappearance of the Soviet bloc, and the disintegration of the USSR, many Americans—policymakers among them—believed that we had reached the end of history. They believed that we had entered a new period in which cooperation among countries on the basis of shared commitment to democratic values and free market economics would not only be possible but would be­come the central feature of the international system. Ten years later, the Islamist terrorist attacks against the United States on September 11th dispelled much of that optimism but did not dislodge one of the key assumptions of 1991. The 9/11 attacks were the work of sub-state actors not only against the United States but against the international community. Americans and American policymakers contin­ued to assume that the governments of the countries of the world, whatever their differences on a wide variety of issues, had a common interest in working together to defeat such challenges and that the counter-terrorist coalition provided a reliable basis for expanding ties. Now, 13 years after 9/11, the United States and the international community have been confronted with a challenge that calls that optimistic assumption into question. By occupying and annexing Ukraine’s Crimea by force under the fig leaf of a referendum and by signaling that it views Crimea as a precedent for further action, the Russian Federation, with which Washington had so hoped to establish and develop cooperative ties, has shown itself to be a revisionist, even revanchist power, that is committed not only to overturning the 1991 settlement but that of 1945 as well. It is tempting to believe that the current crisis is “just about Crimea, which was Russian anyway”—and that isn’t true either, given that Stalin deported the Crimean Tatars from there in 1944, prevented their return, and supported the introduction of ethnic Russians in their place—as all too many in the West are doing. It is critically important to understand just what is at stake and why Russia’s actions in Crimea represent the gravest threat to the rules of the game that the United States has taken the lead in establishing and maintaining since the end of World War II.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Neither Empires nor Imperial Restoration Movements are Eternal, Shelin Says

Paul Goble Staunton, August 7 – More than a generation has passed since the USSR disintegrated, and Moscow has little to show for its efforts to restore the empire besides increasing hostility among the former union republics, isolation from the international community, and anger among Russians about the enormous costs of its imperial policies, Sergey Shelin says. Indeed, what is striking but often overlooked is how little Moscow has achieved in any effort to restore the past, especially when compared with the Bolsheviks who rebuilt the empire during the Russian Civil War and with Stalin who added to it during World War II, the Rosbalt commentator says (rosbalt.ru/blogs/2018/08/07/1722984.html). The Kremlin can point only to several “unrecognized states” like Abkhazia and South Ossetia which it took from Georgia in 2008 and the Donbass which it continues to fight for in Ukraine. Its only “success” in fact was the absorption of Crimea, an illegal and increasingly expensive move that few in Russia think it would be a good idea to try to repeat elsewhere. Shelin consequently argues that there are three compelling reasons to believe that just as empires re not eternal, so too imperial restoration projects aren’t either, and that with time, they will become ever less attractive for Russia just as they have become ever less attractive for peoples in other former empires as well. First of all, “in the present-day world, imperial projects encounter much more opposition than in the era of the world wars. And this is not only about attitudes in the West. For example,” Shelin says, “the attempt of Iran” to build an empire in the eastern Mediterranean has mobilized people against it. Second, “the statist feelings of the Russians even at their peak” in the wake of the Crimean Anschluss “were not accompanied by a mass willingness to sacrifice their lives” for such a project. Crimea was popular because it was cheap; the Donbass because it isn’t is increasingly unpopular. And third, “those on top because they are informed and the masses on an intuitive basis know that an empire is a very expensive thing.” The country that builds one has to spend money on the populations it acquires, often far more per capita than it does on its own people, as the case of Chechnya shows. One can’t exclude the possibility that the Kremlin will try to “solve” its domestic problems by once again playing up imperial “passions” and seeking to expand its borders, Shelin observes. But each such effort becomes less and less attractive to the population and thus less and less effective for the rulers. Any effort to “return to the exaltation of 2008 and 2014 will be difficult even if those in power very much want it,” the commentator concludes. “There are no eternal empires, and there is no eternal imperial restorationism either.”

After Skripal case… terror squad shield Russian billionaires | UK | News | Express.co.uk

EXCLUSIVE: Anti-terror police have been meeting billionaire Russian dissidents in the UK to check their security.

UAWire – Iran decides to bring enriched uranium back from Russia

Tehran has decided to bring back the batches of highly enriched uranium from Russia which it had removed from the country as part of the nuclear deal, reported the Fars news agency, citing Behrouz Kamalvandi, spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI). “When we signed the nuclear deal, we stopped production of 20% fuel and deposited the excessive fuel in Russia in nearly 10 batches. We received the first batch nearly seven months ago and the second batch is about to be transferred back to Iran,” the spokesman said. Kamalvandi noted that each batch of 20% enriched uranium stored in Russia can fuel Tehran’s research reactor for one year. Thus once all batches are returned, they will have enough to power the reactor for 7-8 years. He also recalled that, in accordance with the 2015 nuclear deal, Iran stopped producing enriched uranium, in exchange for shipments of nuclear fuel from abroad. However, the United States’ withdrawal from the deal threatens these agreements. “If the nuclear deal remains in force, other sides should sell us fuel, and if the deal falls through, we would feel unimpeded to produce 20% enriched fuel ourselves,” Kamalvandi emphasized. In May, following the US’s withdrawal from the nuclear deal, AEOI head Ali Akbar Salehi said that Iran is prepared to resume production of enriched uranium, if European countries also pull out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, informally known as the nuclear deal. On June 5, Tehran announced that it was bringing nuclear fuel production back on line.

Iran news: Iranians vent anger at OWN leaders despite crippling US sanctions | World | News | Express.co.uk

IRANIAN protestors have vented their fury at their own leaders amid escalating inflation, high unemployment, and the plummeting rial, turning their blame away from US President Donald Trump as Washington’s sanctions begin to bite.

Iran’s Supreme Leader Khamenei Says No War, No Negotiations With US – Sputnik International

Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has banned holding any direct talks with the United States, according to state TV.

‘US Creating Huge Amount of Antagonism Toward Itself in Iran’ – Prof – Sputnik International

Last week the US reimposed its first round of sanctions on Iran with more economic sanctions aimed at Iran’s oil industry to follow in November. This comes after US President Donald Trump announced his decision in May to pull out of the Iran nuclear agreement.

Iran’s Khamenei bans holding direct talks with United States: TV | Reuters

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei banned holding any direct talks with the United States, state TV reported, rejecting an offer last month by U.S. President Donald Trump for talks with no preconditions with Tehran.

Iran’s Khamenei rejects Trump offer of talks, chides government over economy | Reuters

Iran’s Supreme Leader on Monday rejected U.S. President Donald Trump’s offer of unconditional talks to improve bilateral ties and he also accused the Iranian government of economic mismanagement in the face of reimposed U.S. sanctions.

Death Penalty Not The Answer To Iran’s Economic Woes, HRW Says

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has warned that Iranian officials are trying to head off a looming economic crisis with threats of “new rights-abusing policies,” including applying the death penalty for e…

Iraqi Prime Minister’s Iran Visit Canceled After Sanctions Remarks

Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi’s visit to Iran has been canceled after he said he had no choice but to abide by U.S. sanctions against Tehran, even though he disagreed with their imposition.

Trump’s geopolitical mistake

In global politics, one decision can reverberate into other areas of American foreign policy. And if the decision is a poor one, America’s capacity to defend its interests could be eroded.

The art of the Iranian deal: How Trump can talk to Tehran | Iran News | Al Jazeera

Iranian experts say US needs to deliver confidence-building measures for Tehran to open its doors to negotiations.

Erdogan fights a losing battle with Trump – The Washington Post

There’s only one real winner in the mismatch between the United States and Turkey.

UAWire – Turkey wants to trade with Ukraine and Russia in national currency

Turkey is preparing to carry on trade in national currencies with its largest trading partners, such as Ukraine, China, Russia and Iran, writes Kommersant newspaper. According to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, if European countries want to get rid of the dollar “shackles” then Ankara is ready to create similar trade system with them. Turkey does not accept the world order in which the world has declared an economic war, and countries are pressured by the threat of imposing sanctions, he said. “Those who are trying to settle scores with Turkey and strike below the belt should remember that in the world there is not a single politician and no country that would have achieved success by pursuing a hostile policy towards Ankara,” the Anadolu agency quoted Erdogan.

US should learn they will not achieve results with sanctions against Turkey: Top diplomat

The United States has to learn that it can’t achieve results with sanctions, threats and pressure on Turkey, the Turkish foreign minister has said, reiterating that Ankara is ready to find a solution to the ongoing row through dialogue and diplomacy.

Erdoğan: U.S. can’t teach us law, democracy | Ahval

Friday saw the Turkish lira lose as much as 15 percent in value per dollar, but Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan chose to continue the combative rhetoric blamed by most for the nosedive in a speech in the Black Sea province of Gümüşhane on Friday afternoon. Erdoğan downplayed the importance of the dollar on Thursday evening, and vowed to win what he called an “economic war” with the United States on Friday morning at a talk in the northeastern province of Bayburt. The president referred to U.S. sanctions placed on two Turkish ministers as a reprisal for the imprisonment in Turkey of U.S. citizens and employees, and the comment sent the lira into a further tailspin that only accelerated after U.S. President Donald Trump’s hours later announcing a hefty increase on tariffs on Turkish steel and aluminium. “They think they can bring us to our knees through economic manipulation,” said Erdoğan in Gümüşhane. “Obviously they don’t know this nation.”

Turkish President Erdogan says crash of the lira amid row with the US is a ‘political plot’ | Daily Mail Online

President Erdogan said his country would instead seek ‘new markets, new partnerships and new allies’ after Trump announced higher tariffs on imports from Turkey.

Turkey will start looking for new allies if US attacks persist, Erdoğan warns – Daily Sabah

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan warned Turkey would start looking for new friends if the U.S. continues with its unilateral actions against its NATO ally…

The Rift Between Turkey and America Was Already There | The National Interest

Ankara remains a NATO member state with all of the privileges membership provides. But Turkey’s actions, both its crackdown of democratic governance and its foreign policy, is pulling it further away from the transatlantic community.

Opinion | Partying Like It’s 1998 – The New York Times

Turkey has an old-fashioned currency and debt crisis.

A Lifeline for Turkey – WSJ

Erdogan needs to give up a discretionary monetary policy. By The Editorial Board Aug. 12, 2018 6:50 p.m. ET Like King Lear raging on the heath, Turkey’s Recep Tayyan Erdogan is lashing out at Donald Trump, financial markets, the almighty U.S. dollar and anyone else he can find to assign blame for his country’s currency and debt crisis. Someone should introduce him to economist Steve Hanke, who is offering the Turkish strongman the best lifeline available to stop the panic. Turkey is confronting a run on the lira of the kind the world has seen many times in emerging markets. A country borrows too much to spur growth in an era of low interest rates and easily available credit. Much of that debt is in U.S. dollars, but the cash flow to finance it is earned by local companies in local currency. By some estimates about half of all Turkish debt is owed in hard currencies. That debt becomes much harder to finance when the local currency falls against the dollar. Investors flee the local currency, inflation accelerates, and still more investors flee. Unless the country can stop the run on its currency, a full-blown debt crisis and economic contraction become likely. Mr. Erdogan is blaming Donald Trump’s sanctions and tariffs for the lira crisis, but the U.S. President was lighting a match on already dry tinder. The core problem is years of monetary mismanagement and overborrowing. The Turkish strongman wanted to win an election to change the constitution and consolidate his power, and he leaned on the central bank to keep interest rates low. He won his election but like most authoritarians he thinks he can bully markets the way he does the military.

Turkey could solve its banking crisis with one simple mechanism — but Erdogan is ideologically against it | Business Insider

Turkey’s lira fell 25% against the US dollar last week and is still under pressure. The currency is suffering from trade tensions with the US, deteriorating current account balances, and fears around President Erdogan’s influence over the central bank. Analysts agree that an easy fix would be to raise interest rates by as much as 10%, encouraging investors to put more money in Turkish banks. This is unlikely to happen given that Erdogan has called interest rates “evil.”

Turkey crisis: Economy faces weak lira, inflation, debt and tariffs

Strategists from J.P. Morgan Asset Management said the country has found itself “in the midst of a perfect storm” of worsening financial conditions, shaky investor sentiment, inadequate management of the economy and tariff threats from the U.S. Turkey has in recent years been one of the fastest-growing economies in the world, but its impressive growth numbers were fueled by foreign-currency debt. The country’s borrowing resulted in deficits in both its fiscal and current accounts, and Turkey doesn’t have large enough reserves to rescue the economy when things go wrong, experts say. Making the situation worse for Turkey is President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s preference to keep interest rates low even though inflation is more than three times the central bank’s target.

Turkey says has action plan to ease market concerns; lira firms from record low | Reuters

Turkey has drafted a economic action plan and will start implementing it on Monday morning to ease investor concerns, Finance Minister Berat Albayrak said on Sunday, after the lira plunged to a new record low in early Asia Pacific trade.

Euro Traders Await More Signs of Turkey Pain With Banks at Risk – Bloomberg

There is little sign that the euro is about to turn around its rough patch against the dollar as concerns over the exposure of the region’s banks to Turkey ratchet up and bund yields slide back toward the lower end of their recent range.

Fallout from Donald Trump’s trade war with Turkey may lead to financial turmoil across Europe | Daily Mail Online

The currency has now halved in value over the past year. Turkey’s president Recep Erdogan has hit back hard, saying his country is now in a state of ‘economic war’ with America.

Turkish lira crisis rages on with fresh fall against dollar

Turkey’s currency dropped again Monday as the country wrestled with a crisis that has rattled markets around the world.

7 Things to Keep in Mind About Turkey – Bloomberg

The country is confronting some old problems and a host of news risks.

Lira Extends Slide as Erdogan Says Turkey in an Economic War – Bloomberg

Turkey’s lira slumped for a fourth day to a new record low, with the sell-off spreading to other emerging-market currencies, after the country’s president showed no signs of backing down in a standoff with the U.S.

 

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