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Erdogan replaced central bank chief over lira slump, discomfort with policy, sources say

FILE PHOTO: Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan addresses members of his ruling AK Party (AKP) during a meeting at the Parliament in Ankara, Turkey, October 28, 2020. Murat Cetinmuhurdar/Presidential Press Office/Handout via REUTERS

ANKARA (Reuters) - President Tayyip Erdogan replaced Turkey’s central bank chief over the rapid depreciation in the lira and discomfort with the bank’s policy steps not yielding results, three officials told Reuters on Saturday.

Erdogan replaced Murat Uysal with former finance minister Naci Agbal after the lira TRYTOM=D3 hit record lows, having lost 30% of its value this year.

Agbal, who is seen as a capable technocrat with an orthodox approach to economic policy, faces a difficult task, but his closeness to Erdogan will be an advantage in tackling issues, the officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“There was discomfort over the rise of the dollar rate and the steps taken not yielding results. The rise in the exchange rate really exceeded expectations very rapidly. Some steps were expected to have an impact, but that didn’t happen,” one senior Turkish official said.

“The speed at which he can reach Erdogan is critical in this period. He will convince politicians on certain issues,” the person added.

Reporting by Orhan Coskun and Nevzat Devranoglu; writing by Tuvan Gumrukcu; editing by Jason Neely

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