Erdoğan says Treasury to take over Turkey’s largest lender, İşbank

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Tuesday announced that the nation’s largest listed bank, Türkiye İş Bankası (İşbank), would be transferred to the Treasury.

The bank, which was established by the nation’s founder, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, has four people from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) on its board, as instructed in Ataturk’s will. Ataturk had a 28 percent share in the bank and was the first chairman of the CHP.

“İş Bank is on the table, do not forget it. It will become the property of the Treasury,” Erdoğan said at his party’s weekly meeting. The president went on to say that the bank is the property of the nation.

“I believe this parliament will take this historic decision, with God’s permission, and the 28 percent İşbank stake will be transferred to the nation’s treasury,” Erdoğan told lawmakers.

Erdoğan had renewed his interest in the bank earlier in 2018.

Following his announcement, the bank’s shares plunged 7 percent on the İstanbul stock market.

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