US President Donald Trump said on Friday he had authorised higher tariffs on imports from Turkey, imposing a 20 per cent duty on aluminum and 50 per cent one on steel, as tensions mount between the two NATO allies over Ankara's imprisonment of an evangelical pastor and other diplomatic issues.
“I have just authorized a doubling of Tariffs on Steel and Aluminum with respect to Turkey as their currency, the Turkish Lira, slides rapidly downward against our very strong Dollar!” Trump said in an early morning post on Twitter. “Aluminum will now be 20 per cent and Steel 50 per cent. Our relations with Turkey are not good at this time!”
Erdogan tells Turks to buy plunging lira Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on Turks to support the struggling the lira by exchanging any foreign money, saying Turkey faced “an economic war”.
“If you have dollars, euros or gold under your pillow, go to banks to exchange them for Turkish lira. It is a national fight,” Erdogan said in comments broadcast on national television.
“This will be the response to those who have declared an economic war,” blaming Turkey's woes on what he described as an “interest rate lobby” seeking to push the country to higher rates.
Investors are hoping Erdogan’s comments would give some indication that the government was prepared to support the lira were disappointed with the currency crashing further in value. The currency extended its losses to trade at 6.2 to the dollar, a loss of 11.5 per cent on the day.