Turkey’s S-400 purchase and its effects on the economy - ERDAL TANAS KARAGÖL

Turkey’s S-400 purchase and its effects on the economy

Turkey has started to receive components of the S-400 missile defense systems it had purchased after prioritizing its security and ignoring the arguments, reactions and tensions regarding the deal.

Now we need to ask: What effects will the purchase and delivery of the S-400 air-to-surface missile system have on the economy?

What economic and political repercussions might follow this purchase which the U.S. strictly opposes?

Purchasing the S-400 system

Turkey’s S-400 purchase will without a doubt give it a superiority in defense.

Putting aside the economic cost of Turkey’s choice, it has made a strategic move that will ensure its security.

It has simultaneously forged a security shield and made the choice that is economically prudent.

Furthermore, mounting tensions regarding energy resources in the East Mediterranean have rendered the S-400s a necessity as Turkey increases its security measures.

Because the ownership matter of the reserves in the east Mediterranean is a vital matter in terms of Turkey ensuring the security of its energy supply and to end foreign independence in energy.

Hence, at least the for the time being, to be an economic power in the East Mediterranean region seems like the most likely way out.

Will the U.S. impose sanctions on Turkey?

To be frank, we observed that tensions simmered down when Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his U.S. counterpart Donald Trump met before the delivery at the G-20 summit.

Tensions subsiding alleviated the economic risks and thus, a positive atmosphere prevailed.

Even though hopes were raised during the G-20 summit that the U.S. wouldn’t impose sanctions on Turkey regarding the S-400s, debates have been ongoing on the U.S. imposing sanctions through CAATSA (Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act) and excluding Turkey from the F-35 fighter jet program.

It is incontrovertible that possible economic- security sanctions have a short term economic impact. However, the extent to which CAATSA will be implemented is also of great significance.

If these sanctions are meager, then it is highly likely that it won’t have any more effect in the economy than it did when tensions were heightened during arguments about the purchase.

This expectation overlaps with the fact that Turkey’s economy has been able to stay strong despite it the many shocks it has experienced over the past few years.

Hence, Turkey wants to escape the security- protection quagmire by gritting it’s teeth against the short term economic shocks of possible sanctions.

The S-400s and the new order

It is a well known fact that the priorities of economically powerful countries are to maintain the established economic and political order that are working in their favor.

Hence, when alternatives are found to the current political and economic order, when new instruments are put into play or the economic and political tutelage of the giants are shook, the reactions of the masters of the established order diversify.

In conclusion it seems that with Turkey’s purchase of the S-400s many economic and political conventions will be washed down the drain.

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