February 7, 2018 / 5:37 AM / 10 months ago

Erdogan calls on Turkish cenbank, watchdog to take active role in lowering rates - media

ISTANBUL, Feb 7 (Reuters) - Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan called on the country’s central bank, banking watchdog and state banks to take an active role in lowering interest rates, saying he would hold another meeting on the issue, media reported on Wednesday.

Erdogan has repeatedly called for lower rates to boost the economy and according to a senior economic official he met Central Bank Governor Murat Cetinkaya and officials from state banks last week to discuss steps to reduce rates.

Economic bureaucrats were conducting work on the issue, the Sabah newspaper cited Erdogan as telling reporters on his plane as he returned from a visit to Rome on Monday. Hurriyet newspaper carried a similar report.

“Once this is completed, we will meet again. On this, an active role must be played primarily by the central bank and BDDK (banking watchdog), and then by state banks,” Erdogan was quoted as saying.

“If you do not take an active role, the rest will just do what they want,” he added. “Inflation has still not come down from double to single digits. For as long as you go on with this logic and thinking it won’t either.”

At its most recent policy-setting meeting, the central bank left its top rate steady at 12.75 percent. Data on Monday showed consumer price inflation dipped to 10.35 percent in January from near 12 percent a month earlier. (Reporting by Can Sezer; Editing by Daren Butler)

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