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Wednesday, 16 May, 2001, 01:07 GMT 02:07 UK
Turkey gains $8bn loan
Turkey's economy minister Kemal Dervis at a press conference in Ankara
Turkey's economy minister promised continued reform
By Firdevs Robinson in Ankara

Turkey's rush to pass through some key reforms in its economy seems to have paid off.

In a meeting lasting more than five hours, the IMF board decided to give $8bn in new loans for Turkey and it will release $3.8bn of it immediately.

The approval paves the way for more money from the World Bank as well.

Turkish protesters
Workers have protested the job losses resulting from the economic reforms
Turkey needs international financial help to revive its economy after the second major crisis in the last six months. The country's currency has lost its value by 40% since February.

In return for large amounts of money, Turkey is required to implement some radical changes.

Economic reform

Over the weekend, the Turkish parliament passed two crucial laws, one to reform the banking system, the other to privatise its telecommunications company.

Meanwhile, the banking supervisory board announced a timetable for key changes in the country's banking system.

In a press conference hours before the IMF's decision was announced, Economy Minister Kemal Dervis confirmed Turkey's determination to continue with structural reform.

The government's managed to pass the bulk of 15 reforms promised to the IMF, but Turkey is under increasing pressure to extend these key changes to its political system.

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See also:

27 Apr 01 | Business
IMF backs Turkey aid deal
27 Apr 01 | Business
Turkey's stock market surges
02 Mar 01 | Business
World Bank man to Turkish 'rescue'
28 Feb 01 | Business
Turkish air sell-off delayed
22 Feb 01 | Business
Turkey currency plunge
13 May 01 | Europe
Turk Telecom faces privatisation
22 Feb 01 | Business
Turkish banks at root of crisis
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