Turkish Lira banknotes. File photo/ Reuters
ISTANBUL: The Turkish lira weakened more than 1 per cent against the dollar early on Tuesday after the United States halted delivery of equipment related to the F-35 fighter aircraft to Turkey.
At 0519 GMT, the lira stood at 5.5550 against the US currency, compared with a close on Monday of 5.4913.
The lira has been volatile in the uncertain aftermath of local government elections, weakening 2.5 per cent on Monday to 5.7 per dollar before recovering ground.
In Istanbul, both the main opposition Repulican People’s Party (CHP) and President Tayyip Erdogan’s AK Party claimed victory in the mayoral elections. Later, both candidates said CHP’s Ekrem Imamoglu was around 25,000 votes ahead.
The disagreement over the F-35 is the latest of a series of diplomatic disputes between the United States and Turkey, foremost among which are Turkish demands that the United States extradite cleric Fethullah Gulen, differences over Middle East policy and the war in Syria, and sanctions on Iran.
US officials have told their Turkish counterparts they will not receive further shipments of F-35 related equipment needed to prepare for the arrival of the stealthy fighter aircraft, sources told Reuters on Monday.
Washington’s step to block the delivery of the jet comes amid fears, harbored by the United States and other NATO allies, that radar on the Russian S-400 missile system will learn how to spot and track the F-35, making it less able to evade Russian weapons.
Japan will forge ahead with a planned sales tax hike to 10 per cent in October, likely knocking the economy into contraction in the fourth quarter, a Reuters poll showed. Tokyo has twice postponed raising the sales tax from 8 per cent but Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has repeatedly said the hike would be proceeded this time. To blunt its economic impact, the government has earmarked about 2 trillion yen ($18 billion) in spending.
German investor morale improved for the sixth month in a row due to a resilient global economy and a delay to Britain’s departure from the EU, a survey showed on Tuesday, but the growth outlook for Europe’s largest economy remains clouded by external risks.
China’s economic growth is expected to slow to a near 30-year low of 6.2 per cent this year, a Reuters poll showed, as sluggish demand at home and abroad weigh on activity despite a flurry of policy support measures. The median forecast was slightly lower than the 6.3 per cent economists had predicted in the last poll in January.
The 5th UAE-UK Joint Economic Committee (JEC) was held in London with the participation of a high-level official delegation from the UAE, headed by Engineer Mohammed Bin Abdul Aziz Al Shehhi, Undersecretary of Economic Affairs in the Ministry of Economy, on behalf of Engineer Sultan Bin Saeed Al Mansoori, UAE Minister of Economy.
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Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), the leading international financial hub in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region, on Tuesday announced the final details ahead of the launch of its new DIFC Employee