Turkey introduces tariffs on US cars and other goods

NEWS 15.08.2018 12:00
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Source: Reuters/Brendan McDermid

Turkey on Wednesday intensified its clash with the United States, announcing heavy new tariffs on some American products including cars, alcohol and tobacco, CNN reported.

Turkish Vice President Fuat Oktay said on Twitter that the measures were in response to “the deliberate attack of the US administration on our economy.”

The Turkish government has doubled its retaliatory tariffs on American cars to 120 percent and on alcoholic drinks to 140 percent, according to a notice published Wednesday. Other affected products include fruit, coal, makeup and rice.

Relations between Washington and Ankara have rapidly soured in recent weeks over Turkey’s detention of an American pastor.

The Trump administration announced plans on Friday to double US tariffs imports of steel and aluminium from Turkey.

According to CNN, the political spat with Washington has added to pressure on Turkey’s currency, the lira, which has plunged against the dollar.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has accused the United States of stabbing Turkey in the back and on Tuesday called for a boycott of US electronics products.

In June, Turkey imposed a first wave of tariffs on US exports, worth a total of $1.8 billion, in retaliation for President Donald Trump’s initial tariffs on steel aluminium.

The products targeted Wednesday are the same as in June. The lira strengthened for a second consecutive trading session on Wednesday, with gains for the day reaching 6 percent in morning trade in Europe.

The currency is still down more than 35 percent against the dollar in 2018. The diplomatic dispute with the United States is just one of the factors that has hammered the Turkish currency.

Investors have also been unnerved in recent weeks by a lack of action by the Turkish central bank, which shocked markets last month when it declined to hike interest rates in the face of rampant inflation.

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