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Turkey’s Biggest Problems: Economy, Unemployment

Turkey’s Biggest Problems: Economy, Unemployment Turkey’s Biggest Problems: Economy, Unemployment

A nationwide survey conducted by MAK consulting company unveiled that the plunging lira and unemployment are the biggest problems facing Turkey as the nation heads to the polls next month for snap presidential and parliamentary elections.

The results of the survey arrive as the nation’s currency took a record dive on Tuesday night, with the US dollar/Turkish Lira rate hitting 4.82. The lira has been one of the worst-performing emerging market currencies this year. Meanwhile, Turkey’s unemployment rate rose to 10.8% in January, the highest level in 10 months, according to the Turkish Statistical Institute, TUIK, Ahval reported.

MAK consulting’s results differ from previous surveys which have traditionally found ‘terrorism’ and ‘security’ as Turkey’s most pressing problems. The poll, conducted between May 13-20 with 5,500 people, found that 45% of those asked saw the economy, including the steadily-dropping lira and  unemployment, as the greatest challenge facing Turkey.

The same survey found that 18% found foreign policy to be an obstacle for the nation, followed by the justice system at 7%. Terror and security was seen as Turkey’s most pressing issue for 5% of those surveyed.

Another 15% of the surveyed said that various other issues were the greatest problem for the nation while 10% were undecided.

The poll also measured support for presidential candidates ahead of the country’s elections on June 24, which is set to usher in a new presidential system which was approved narrowly in last year’s referendum and will grant extended powers to the president.

Of those surveyed, 48.5% said they stood behind the presidency of leading Justice and Development Party leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan, while 22. 5% said they support main opposition Republican People’s Party candidate Muharrem ?nce.

Pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party presidential candidate Selahattin Demirtas was favored by 9% of those surveyed.

Responding to a question on whether Turkey is currently facing a financial crisis, 57% answered yes. 35% answered the follow-up question of  "Who would be able to solve the crisis?" with Turkish President Erdogan, as compared to 20% who said opposition CHP presidential candidate Muharrem ?nce.

Around 15% of those asked believed that right-wing nationalist Good Party presidential candidate Meral Aksener could solve Turkey’s economic crisis while 7% held that the HDP presidential candidate Demirtas could take on the task.

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