Turkey doubles tariffs on some USA imports; Turkish lira rallies


While the Brunson matter appeared far from being resolved, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan got a shot in the arm from Qatar's Emir, who approved a package of economic projects, investments and deposits after the two met in Ankara.

"I don't think the Russians will bankroll Turkey at this stage, as I think they have their own issues with the United States with sanctions and will want to maintain their own FX buffers", he said.

The lira, which has lost more than 40 percent against the dollar this year, meanwhile, continued to rally after central bank's liquidity moves had the effect of supporting the currency.

The tariffs come a day after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey would boycott USA electronic goods, singling out iPhones.

Tariffs were also increased on cosmetics, rice and coal.

It follows a string of urgent steps Erdogan has taken to protect its economy from an escalating feud with US counterpart Donald Trump over an American pastor held in Turkey.

On August 10, Trump announced that his administration was doubling steel and aluminum tariffs on Turkey.

"Such trade liberalization would require time but it could support Turkey's exports".

In this July 25, 2018 photo, evangelical pastor Andrew Craig Brunson, center, arrives at his house in Izmir, Turkey.

Talks between Washington and Ankara in recent days to resolve the standoff have foundered.

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"The president has a great deal of frustration on the fact that Pastor Brunson has not been released as well as the fact that other USA citizens and employees of diplomatic facilities have not been released", said White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders.

While policy makers have hiked lending rates by 500 basis points this year to 17.75 per cent, they're under constant pressure from Erdogan to keep rates low because he thinks it's better for the economy.

On Monday, the U.S. president signed a defense authorization act that notably prohibits the delivery of F-35 Joint Strike Fighter aircraft to Turkey if it buys Russia's S-400 air defense system.

Turkey is now grappling with a currency crisis and heightened tensions with the United States, its North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally.

That's according to Turkish state media, which also reported a higher court will likely review the appeal.

Last week, Washington doubled steel and aluminum tariffs on Turkey over its continued detention of the US pastor Andrew Brunson.

In another unconventional step, the regulator said that until markets "normalize", it would temporarily stop applying the effect of day-to-day losses on the securities held by banks to their capital adequacy ratios.

The lira firmed as far as 5.75 against the dollar on Wednesday and stood at 6.08 at 0943 GMT in a move initially triggered by the Turkish court decision on the Greek soldiers who faced espionage charges.

President Erdogan said on Tuesday that Turkey was taking measures to stabilise its economy and should not "give in to the enemy" by investing in foreign currencies.