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How Ankara is using taxes to target boozers

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Turkey’s consumer inflation rate hit 8.5% in 2016, surpassing the government’s 5% target. A number of factors contributed to this outcome, including the dollar’s 20% rise against the Turkish lira. Such high inflation also has to do with alcoholic beverages and tobacco, which figure in the “pleasure-giving substances” category. The price increase in this category last year was nearly 32%, or 276% higher than overall consumer inflation. The category accounts for less than 5% of the total consumer basket, and although the exorbitant price increases likely only concern a limited number of people, in Turkey’s prevailing political climate, they speak of growing discrimination and intolerance against Turks who reject the conservative lifestyle the government promotes.

Read more: Turkey Pulse

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