EGF Turkey File, 1 March — 15 March 2013

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Insights into Turkish Domestic and International Politics

1 March — 15 March 2013

By John VanPool, EGF Turkey and Black Sea Regional Analyst

Key Points:

  • Talks continue between Ocalan and the government, with a ceasefire being mentioned ahead of the March 21 Nevruz holiday.
  • The autonomy of Kurdish fighters in Syria and Iraq leave Ankara anxious of the PKK exploiting increasingly fluid borders should peace talks fail.
  • Turkey continues to avoid direct military intervention in Syria's civil war, although fear of the conflict spreading has the country on edge.
  • Ratings agencies think Turkey's ability to cut its current-account deficit will fade over 2013. The central bank's use of foreign cash in its monetary policies leaves the economy open to global shocks.
  • Reliance on energy imports is fueling the growing account deficit, and Turkey's lack of storage infrastructure prevents the country from sitting on supplies for later use.
  • Turkey's eastern provinces may hold shale gas deposits, while NABUCCO and TANAP"s intelligence sharing agreement will help diversify the country's import markets

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