President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s "secret service expenses” broke this year's record in July and reached 901.5 million Turkish liras ($33M), according to recent budget reports of the Treasury and Finance Ministry.
Between January and July, a total of 2.8 billion TL ($103.5M) was spent from this discretionary fund which is used only by the President and cannot be subject to any audit, the daily BirGün reported.
President Erdoğan allocated 188.5 million TL in January, 341.7 million TL in March, 164.4 million TL in May, and a substantial increase to 577.8 million TL in June from the discretionary fund.
Erdoğan was elected president for the first time in 2014. Since then, he has spent 18.4 billion liras from the discretionary fund. In 2018, with the transition to the Presidential Government System, the expenditures on from the fund doubled and exceeded 2 billion liras annually and a record was broken in 2022 with 3.4 billion liras. From 2003, when Justice and Development Party (AKP) came to power to 2022, approximately 24 billion liras was spent.
Turkey posts $1.8B budget surplus in July
The budget revenues increased by 156% compared to July 2022 and reached to 504.4 billion TL. The budget expenditures were 455.8 billion TL, and a budget surplus of 48.6 billion liras was recorded.
There was a negligible fluctuation in expenses during July, the same month that saw the issuance of the Savings Measures Circular aimed at imposing limitations on various public expenditure categories.
Solely in July, an expenditure of 1.6 billion liras was dedicated to public rental needs, encompassing expenses like aircraft rentals and building leases. Over the initial seven months of this year, the cumulative expenditure on such rentals reached 6.2 billion liras.
The public's interest expenses during January-July were recorded at 312.9 billion TL. The interest expense for the month of July alone amounted to 37.7 billion liras.