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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's abhorrence of high interest rates resulted in close to 15% inflation in 2020.   © Nikkei montage
Asia Insight

Erdogan swallows 'bitter pills' as inflation again rocks Turkey

Architect of past growth blasts president for letting currency slide and cash flee

SINAN TAVSAN and MOMOKO KIDERA, Nikkei staff writers | Turkey

ANKARA -- After going on at length about Turkey's breakneck growth from 2003 to 2013, a period during which the country became an emerging market darling to international investors, the once and long-served economy czar took a deep breath and sighed. The subject had just turned. "What, when and how did it all go wrong?"

"I think there are series of episodes, like a Netflix drama," Ali Babacan told Nikkei Asia at the modest Ankara headquarters of the centrist Democracy and Progress Party. Babacan founded the party a year ago, after resigning from the ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP, run by Turkey's omnipotent Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who before becoming the country's president in 2014 spent 11 years as prime minister.

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