ISTANBUL

The worth of Turkey’s Economic Stability Shield package launched to curb economic fallout from coronavirus has hit 240 billion Turkish liras ($35 billion) so far, the treasury and finance minister said Wednesday.

Addressing to a virtual meeting held by Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEIK), Berat Albayrak said the amount provided under the relief package which was announced on March 18 equals to 5% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).

“If we need to express its economic size with multiplier effect, this figure reaches 525 billion liras ($75 billion), which is equivalent to approximately 11% of GDP,” Albayrak stressed.

The government provided cash aid for nearly 5 million families with low income, he added.

The meeting discussed the ways to eliminate the impact of pandemic on the economy and steps to be taken to utilize the potential of the new norm in the best way, he said.

Stressing that the government will continue efforts to fight coronavirus, Albayrak said Turkey is among the best performing countries with its support-to-GDP-ratio regarding coronavirus relief packages.

Albayrak highlighted the countries’ determination in putting the best and accurate policies into practice, while rehandling its foreign trade.

“The number of countries to which Turkey sent medical aid surpassed 60,” he stressed.

Nail Olpak, the head of DEIK, said also helping other countries, Turkey has shown a great solidarity during the pandemic period.

He said Turkish companies did not shutdown completely in this process and managed to protect their businesses and personnel.

“During this pandemic, which requires a long-term struggle, it is not possible to get results by halting everything,” he added.

“We did not stop the wheels of the economy with supports and postponements.”

*Writing by Tuba Sahin,Gokhan Ergocun

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