Turkey's parliament passed a law Wednesday, April 4, liberalizing the state-controlled sugar industry, a reform that Turkey had pledged to accomplish within an economic recovery program.
The legislation deregulates sugar prices, lifts restraints on the establishment of private sugar plants and provides a legal grounding for the privatization of 27 state-owned sugar refineries.
It also introduces regulations to limit the production of sugar beet within quotas covered by the European Union, which Turkey is a candidate to join.
The reform is part of measures Turkey revealed last month to battle a severe financial crisis that forced the government to float the Turkish lira, effectively ending an IMF-backed anti-inflation program in place since 1999.
A series of other legal amendments, aimed mainly at reforming the country's ailing banking sector and speeding up privatization, are yet to be submitted to parliament.
Turkey is now in a process of outlining a new, tighter economic plan with revised macro-economic targets, while lobbying for foreign aid of $10-$12 billion (€11-€13 billion). — (AFP, Ankara)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)