Inflation has become a dirty word in almost every language in the world. Princes around?
GV Istanbul harbour
SV shoppers at stalls (THREE SHOTS)
SV motorists buying petrol (FOUR SHOTS)
GV Istanbul harbour and SV dockers working (FOUR SHOTS)
SV crowds queue for cigarettes (TWO SHOTS)
SV Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit on way to plane and boarding (TWO SHOTS)
SCU Mr Ecevit speaks to camera in English
SV shoppers at stalls (TWO SHOTS)
TRANSCRIPT: SEQ. 7: ECEVIT: "As to the international assistance which we do need badly in this period of economic crisis, which is partly due to the world economic conditions, we haven't been able to find as much understanding as we needed... not as promptly as we needed. In other world I appreciate that many countries gave us some understanding in the way of rescheduling our debts which has given us breathing space but the credits thus far obtained was hardly sufficient for Turkey's needs."
Turkey has been hit harder by inflation than any other member of the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development... 60 percent in 1978. And the O.E.C.D. has predicted tough times ahead.
There are three million Turks without jobs. That's 13 percent of the workforce. They're hard pressed by inflation...but with an average daily wage of only six dollars (153 ???lira) even those with jobs have difficulty keeping up with the sharply increasing prices of such things as petrol...which rose 84 percent. And sometimes it's in short supply. So is fuel oil and natural gas.
Turkey has piled up 15-thousand million dollars in foreign debt, largely because exports have dropped and imports have risen. In the first ten months of 1978, imports outpaced exports by two-thousand-million dollars.
In an effort to curb the cash outflow, Turkey has cut back imports...reducing its trade deficit by 45 percent. But this has hit local industry by causing a shortage of spare parts and raw materials.
There are other shortages, too. People wait in long queues at the Government monopoly TEKEL stores for even locally produced products like filter cigarettes
The leftist Government of Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit has been struggling with the problem for one year. In December he left for Scandanavia...the latest of many trips he's made partly aimed at getting financial help.
Already his Government has asked the European Economic Community for 8-thousand-million dollars over five years. has appealed to NATO for assistance, and has turned to the International Monetary Fund for guidance. But the prospects are gloomy.
(ECEVIT STATEMENT: "As to internat'l assistance which we do need badly in this period of economic crisis which is partly due to the world economic conditions, we haven't been able to find as much understanding as we needed, not as promptly as we needed. (In) other world I appreciate that many countries gave us some understanding in the way of rescheduling our debts which has given us breathing space but the credits thus far obtained was hardly sufficient for Turkey's needs.")
Mr. Ecevit says he's confident the Turkish people know tough measures are necessary and will support them,
Secretary General of the Turkish Industrialist's and Businessmen's Association Gungor Uras Shares the optimism. He says businessmen have grown accustomed to operating in a crisis.
(URAS STATEMENT: "I believe that they don't care so much about these things. Normally they are always complaining about crisis but still they are trying to continue their activities with a good expectation about (the) future, with optimism. They are not so pessimists, I think, generally.")
But others doubt that Turks will continue to wait patiently while the government tightens their belts. Many predict escalating political terrorism and polarisation as Turkey moves into the New year.
This is Don Dickson reporting from Istanbull
THE PACKAGE IS PROBABLY TOO LONG AS SUGGESTED BUT THE URAB LEAD IN AND STATEMENT MARKED ABOVE COULD BE DROPPED WITHOUT AFFECTING THE FULL REPORT. I ALSO SUSPECT THE COLOUR BALANCE OF THE INTRVU WILL BE POOR. R???DS.
NOTE TO EDITOR AND PRODUCER: I HAVE REPEATED THE FIRST LONG SECTION OF NARRATION WITH NO REFERENCE TO "THOUSAND MILLION", "QUEUES" AND "PETROL."
THIS REPEATED TAKE MAY BE MORE APPLICABLE TO THE LANA FEED WHERE THE TERMS "BILLION", "LINES" AND "GAS" ARE USED. THE FINAL TAKES ARE THE SAME SO ARE NOT REPEATED. HOPE YOU FIND IT ALL USEFUL. CHEERS.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Inflation has become a dirty word in almost every language in the world. Princes around the globe have rocketed in the last decade and nowhere, it seems, have wages kept pace with them. Each country has its own story to tell and each story seems worse than the last.
SYNOPSIS: Istanbul: and the Turkish government is wrestling with a worse inflation problem than any other member of the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development. Prices have soared by sixty percent in the last twelve months and the OECD says the tough times will continue.
Three million Turks are unemployed and even those with jobs are hard pressed to keep up with the rises in the price of essentials. Petrol prices increased by eighty-four percent in 1978. The cause starts here, at the docks. Turkey has piled up a massive 15 billion dollar (7,500 million pound) foreign debt by importing far more than has been exported. Drastic action was needed. Imports were cut and the trade deficit reduced to almost half. But a shortage of spare parts and raw materials has hit the home industries.
People even have to queue for cigarettes at the nationalised Tekel stores.
Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit has already asked the European Economic Community for eight billion dollars (GBP 4,000,000,000) appealed to NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation) for assistance and turned to the International Monetary Fund for help. Before he left on this trip to Scandanavia (13 December 1978) in yet another bid to secure an international loan, he spoke of Turkey's plight.
The shoppers in the market place know that the government's efforts have had little benefit for them. And observers say the uncertain political situation has weakened the government's hand.