Turkish trade union says TÜİK committing crime by not releasing price list in inflation calculation

Turkish trade union DİSK’s president Arzu Çerkezoğlu has said that the government statistics office TÜİK was committing crime by not releasing the price list of goods that forms the basis of inflation calculation.

Duvar English

The government-run Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK) in June 2022 took a decision not to release the prices of individual items used to calculate the inflation rate, which prompted the Confederation of Progressive Trade Unions of Turkey (DİSK) to file a lawsuit.

DİSK chair Arzu Çerkezoğlu announced last week that they had won the lawsuit against TÜİK. And in a new statement on May 3, Çerkezoğlu said that TÜİK was committing a crime by not complying with the court’s decision and still refusing to release the prices of basket items used in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) calculation.

Çerkezoğlu said that TÜİK’s refusal to abide by the court’s decision makes inflation data “more dubious” than ever. “TÜİK’s insistence on hiding the prices of (CPI) basket goods of onion, cheese, pasta, meat, milk and tomatoes from people can’t be accepted. It is not acceptable that executives running a state institution do not abide by the judiciary’s decision,” she said in a written statement.

“What TÜİK Presidency needs to do is to abide by the judiciary’s decisions. TÜİK Presidency is committing crime by not recognizing the judiciary’s decisions. This institution which has approximately 100-year-long deep-rooted past and richness should not be trampled anymore, should not be turned into a dubious situation, and what is necessary judicially should be done.”

Questions have been raised about the accuracy of official inflation data, with citizens pointing out that the published rate is lower than the market realities. TÜİK is said to have been tweaking inflation data for political reasons, a claim which has been dismissed as groundless by the management of the institute.