Turkey’s president has fired one of the country’s two central bank officials, the third of whom has been fired for two months with the help of independent financial institutions.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan issued an order in the Official Gazette early Tuesday morning to remove Oguzhan Ozbas, a member of the finance committee, and replace him with Semih Tumen, a professor of economics at TED University in Ankara.
In March, Erdogan fired Naci Agbal, the third largest banker in less than two years. Agbal was replaced by Sahap Kavcioglu, a journalist with Erdogan’s similar views on high interest rates, rather than curbing inflation. One week later, Erdogan replaced Deputy Prime Minister Murat Cetinkaya.
The lira has lost 14% of its value against the dollar since March as fears of Kavcioglu bank’s failure to persuade Erdogan to comply with a price-fixing policy, which has been held twice in the last three years.
Erdogan has stated that overall interest rates and inflation will remain below 10% this year. He has hired a central bank to curb borrowing money to help finance the economy.
The central bank has held its next tax convening meeting on June 17. Kavcioglu has promised to keep its rules until inflation declines but has removed some of its previous rhetoric.
Tumen, 44, holds a bachelor’s degree from the London School of Economics and the University of Chicago. He has worked at the central bank for various positions and as a public consultant in Erdogan.
Only three of the seven members of the finance committee have been in the legislature for three years or more, and the rest have been elected since 2020.