Despite recent developments in the Ukrainian conflict, its economic effects seem to be set in the long term. Five Turkish banks have withdrawn from the Mir payment system set up by Russia following the exclusion of its banks from the SWIFT system. Like its European neighbors, Turkey is ensuring a maximum stock of gas to face the 2022 winter, marked by historically high gas prices. As expected, the country's underground gas storage facilities reached full filling capacity in early October. The date for the start of exploitation of the Sakarya off‑shore gas field has been announced: 1st quarter of 2023.
The economic results for the first half of 2022 have reassured the Turkish business community and many international observers. However, the Turkish state faces a reduced debt capacity in the financial markets in the context of the prolonged depreciation of the Turkish lira and the reduction of its foreign currency reserves. On this occasion, the rating agency S&P Global Ratings lowered Turkey's sovereign rating from B+ to B, while raising its outlook from negative to stable.
Inflation continued to rise in September. The consumer price index rose by +3.08% month on month and +83.45% year on year. The producer price index increased by +4.78% month on month and +151.5% year on year. As announced, the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey lowered its main key interest rate for the third consecutive month. It is this time, a drop of 150 basis points in its interest rates. The main policy rate is now at 10.5%, while the stated target is a single-digit policy rate.
The first results of tourism performance have been disclosed and seem to indicate a virtual recovery towards the ante-pandemic situation. 29.3 million tourists visited Turkey between January and September 2022, compared to 31 million for the same period in 2019. In the third quarter of 2022, tourism revenue reached TRY 17.952 billion, a jump of +27.1 % year-on-year.