Turkey’s President announces major reshuffle in his cabinet

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Turkey’s President announces major reshuffle in his cabinet
Turkey’s President announces major reshuffle in his cabinet :File Photo

Recep Tayyip Erdogan named former economy chief and internationally respected ex-banker Mehmet Simsek as treasury and finance minister.

An internationally respected former banker gets top economy job, powerful intelligence chief is named foreign minister.

Erdogan, who was sworn into his third presidential term on Saturday, changed almost all of his cabinet members except for the ministers for health and culture.

Simsek was highly regarded by investors when he served as finance minister between 2009 and 2015 and deputy prime minister in charge of the economy until 2018, before stepping down in advance of a series of lira crashes that year.

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His appointment could mark a departure from years of unorthodox economic policies under Erdogan, which have included maintaining low interest rates despite soaring inflation, and heavy state control of markets.

A former Merrill Lynch economist, Simsek is known to oppose Erdogan’s unconventional policies.

Turkey is grappling with a cost-of-living crisis and inflation soared to 85 percent in October before easing to 44 percent in May. The currency has lost more than 10 percent of its value against the dollar since the start of the year.

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Hakan Fidan, Erdogan’s intelligence chief and a former soldier, was named as the new foreign minister replacing Mevlut Cavusoglu, who has served in the role since 2014.

 

Turkey’s President announces major reshuffle in his cabinet
Turkey’s President announces major reshuffle in his cabinet :File Photo

One of Erdogan’s closest aides, Fidan has headed the National Intelligence Organisation (MIT) since 2010, and before that was an adviser to Erdogan in the prime minister’s office.

In 2012, Fidan was the subject of an inquiry, subsequently quashed, over secret peace talks that MIT had held with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) armed group in Oslo.

Yasar Guler, chief of general staff of the Turkish armed forces, was announced as defence minister, replacing Hulusi Akar. The 69-year-old was the military chief during Turkey’s military incursions into Syria in 2019 and 2020, and also oversaw subsequent military operations there and in Iraq.

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Erdogan also announced that Cevdet Yilmaz will be his vice president. Yilmaz has previously served as minister of development, deputy chairman of Erdogan’s Adalet ve Kalkınma Party’s (Justice and Development Party, AK Party) economic affairs and deputy prime minister in charge of the economy.

Yilmaz, 56, has been the chairman of the Turkish Parliament’s Planning and Budget Commission since November 2020.

 

Turkey’s President announces major reshuffle in his cabinet
Turkey’s President announces major reshuffle in his cabinet :File Photo

Here is a full list of Erdogan’s new cabinet:

Vice President: Cevdet Yilmaz
Foreign Minister: Hakan Fidan
Treasury and Finance Minister: Mehmet Simsek
Defence Minister: Yasar Guler
Interior Minister: Ali Yerlikaya
Education Minister: Yusuf Tekin
Justice Minister: Yilmaz Tunc
Family and Social Services Minister: Mahinur Ozdemir Goktas
Labour and Social Security Minister: Vedat Isikhan
Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change Minister: Mehmet Ozhaseki
Energy and Natural Resources Minister: Alparslan Bayraktar
Youth and Sports Minister: Osman Askin Bak
Culture and Tourism Minister: Mehmet Nuri Ersoy
Health Minister: Fahrettin Koca
Industry and Technology Minister: Mehmet Fatih Kacir
Agriculture and Forestry Minister: Ibrahim Yumakli
Trade Minister: Omer Bolat
Transport and Infrastructure Minister: Abdulkadir Uraloglu