Turkish Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan has deemed the expenses of municipalities run by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) "trade secrets," upon a parliamentary question by main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) deputy Alpay Antmen.
Antmen asked the minister to state the details of the products and services imported by AKP municipalities and the money spent on them.
"The demand in question can't be met since information sought regarding the municipalities are of trade secret value," Pekcan said, refraining from answering the parliamentary question.
Antmen, in return, said that he didn't ask about anybody's private trade relations.
"I asked what was imported between 2003 and 2020 by the municipalities as a lawmaker within the scope of the duty and authority given to me by the constitution. I asked what are the prices of the imported trees and landscaping and agricultural products," Antmen said.
"What does trade secret mean? I asked about the money spent by the institutions that are run by the people's money. I wanted to learn where people's money was spent. It seems that there are financial relations that they want to cover up by calling them trade secrets," he added.
Saying that there are municipalities that purchased a tree for 26,500 Turkish Liras, Antmen noted that the details of the expenses need to be revealed.
"Who knows where citizens' billions of liras was spent and who became rich as a result. If you're deeming the expenses 'trade secrets,' then there is something you're afraid of," Antmen said.