Turkey: Facing a soft landing or serious turbulence?
September 19, 2012 -- Updated 1731 GMT (0131 HKT)
- Turkey, straddling Europe and Asia, has a gross domestic product of $773 billion
- It represents the fourth letter of a new acronym crafted by Goldman Sachs: MIST
- After blistering growth in the past two years the country has hit a patch of turbulence
- But there is a silver lining in this slow down
Editor's note: John Defterios is CNN's Emerging Markets Editor and anchor of Global Exchange, CNN's business show focused on the emerging and BRIC markets.
Abu Dhabi (CNN) -- Turkey straddles Europe and Asia, is a gateway for oil and gas imports going into Europe and its economy has trebled in size over the past decade. The country's gross domestic product is now a sizable $773 billion.
It also represents the fourth letter of a new acronym crafted by Goldman Sachs (the investment bank which identified the BRIC nations) to highlight stable, fast growing countries: MIST: Mexico, Indonesia, South Korea and Turkey.
What's happening with the BRICS?
But after blistering growth of between 8.5% and 9% growth in the past two years, the country has hit a patch of turbulence. Investors are now eager to find out whether this economy can stabilize after tumbling 2.9% in the second quarter of this year.
Erdogan: U.S. lacks initiative on Syria
Mehmet Simsek, a former London-based investment banker and economist who is now finance minister of Turkey, is confident the current quarter represents the trough. "A modest growth is also likely in the third quarter, but from the fourth quarter onwards a pick up seems reasonably likely," he told CNN.
Turkey's unending conflict at home
Turkey's central bank moved to support growth with a larger than expected 1.5% cut in the main interest rate Wednesday, pushing it down to 10%. Now that the U.S. Federal Reserve, the European Central Bank and the Bank of Japan have provided more liquidity, Turkey believes there is room to maneuver.
Doing business in Turkey
"The move by the Turkish Central Bank should be considered in the context of both domestic and international conditions," Simsek said in an interview from Ankara. "The slow down is partly micro-managed. It's part of moving to more sustainable growth."
Iran and Turkey battle for Iraq supremacy
The government is facing other issues. It is having difficulty controlling the two major outbreaks of violence at its doorstep.
Syrian refugees continue to flood in, officially 80,000 to date, and there's been a flare up of the crisis with Kurdish militants in the south-eastern corner of the country.
Both challenges will continue to chip away at Turkey's predominant role as the hub for East-West trade if they escalate and drag on for years rather than months.
But there is a silver lining in this slow down. During the years of rapid growth, economists fretted over the country's double digit current account deficit. Imports have slowed down and exports are booming -- up 20% in the second quarter -- despite the slowdown in the European Union.
From over 10% of GDP, the deficit is now down to a manageable 7.4% -- and the finance minister is aiming to get that down to 6% within the next two years.
Part of complete coverage on
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1526 GMT (2326 HKT)
Advocates say the exam includes unnecessarily invasive and irrelevant procedures -- like a so-called "two finger" test.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0009 GMT (0809 HKT)
Supplies of food, clothing and fuel are running short in Damascus and people are going hungry as the civil war drags on.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1801 GMT (0201 HKT)
Supporters of Richard III want a reconstruction of his head to bring a human aspect to a leader portrayed as a murderous villain.
February 5, 2013 -- Updated 1548 GMT (2348 HKT)
Robert Fowler spent 130 days held hostage by the same al Qaeda group that was behind the Algeria massacre. He shares his experience.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0507 GMT (1307 HKT)
As "We are the World" plays, a video shows what looks like a nuclear attack on the U.S. Jim Clancy reports on a bizarre video from North Korea.
The relationship is, once again, cold enough to make Obama's much-trumpeted "reset" in Russian-U.S. relations seem thoroughly off the rails.
Ten years on, what do you think the Iraq war has changed in you, and in your country? Send us your thoughts and experiences.
February 5, 2013 -- Updated 1215 GMT (2015 HKT)
Musician Daniela Mercury has sold more than 12 million albums worldwide over a career span of nearly 30 years.
Photojournalist Alison Wright travelled the world to capture its many faces in her latest book, "Face to Face: Portraits of the Human Spirit."
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0006 GMT (0806 HKT)
Europol claims 380 soccer matches, including top level ones, were fixed - as the scandal widens, CNN's Dan Rivers looks at how it's done.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1237 GMT (2037 HKT)
That galaxy far, far away is apparently bigger than first thought. The "Star Wars" franchise will get two spinoff movies, Disney announced.
February 8, 2013 -- Updated 0718 GMT (1518 HKT)
It's an essential part of any trip, an activity we all take part in. Yet almost none of us are any good at it. Souvenir buying is too often an obligatory slog.
Today's five most popular stories