For emerging countries such as Turkey, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is often the go-to place to seek financial aid in times of crisis, albeit grudgingly. In return for much-needed loans, unavailable from other lenders, ailing countries acquiesce to bitter pills the IMF prescribes for recovery. The loans are released in tranches, conditioned on the completion of tough homework.
In recent months, the economic woes of Argentina and Turkey have often made them the subject of IMF-related news and commentaries. In mid-May, Argentina — whose economic indicators are worse than Turkey’s — had to knock on the IMF’s door for financial aid, braving popular anger at the prospect of austerity measures. And what about Turkey, which last week stepped back from the brink of a full-blown currency crisis ahead of critical June 24 elections? The country’s outlook suggests it is not so desperate as to run for IMF aid, but the prospect seems inevitable if Ankara misses “the last exit before the bridge.”