Savings claims fall flat: 402 million liras spent on promotions

Millions of minimum wage earners and pensioners with base pensions under 8,000 lira are left without a raise. Meanwhile, government spending on representation, promotion, and hospitality has soared, making savings claims seem hollow.

Publication: 05.07.2024 - 13:01
Savings claims fall flat: 402 million liras spent on promotions
Abone Ol google-news

According to data from the Ministry of Treasury and Finance, spending on representation and promotion was 52.5 million lira in April. Despite the introduction of austerity measures, this figure surged to 402.7 million lira in May. Expenses for meetings and organizations jumped from 9.3 million lira to 225.4 million lira. In April, 1 billion 23 million 732 thousand lira was spent on rent payments, categorized under goods and services procurement. This expenditure also rose in May to 1 billion 122 million 52 thousand lira.

'Zero' for Workers, 'Millions' for Hospitality

Vehbi Bakırlıoğlu, a member of the TBMM Plan and Budget Commission and CHP Manisa Deputy, criticized the government for spending millions on representation, promotion, and hospitality while giving "zero raises" to pensioners and minimum wage earners.

Bakırlıoğlu criticized TÜİK's inflation data and emphasized that Treasury and Finance Minister Mehmet Şimşek is burdening workers and pensioners with the economy's problems. "With these unrealistic inflation figures, which have nothing to do with the inflation felt in markets, our workers and pensioners are being condemned to poverty; minimum wage earners, who receive no raises, are almost being condemned to hunger. The money not given as raises to workers is spent on meeting and organization expenses. From 9 million to 225 million! While austerity measures are supposedly in place in the public sector, how was it possible to conduct an organization or meeting with an increase of nearly 25 times in one month?"

Public sector spending on goods and services procurement was 40.1 billion lira in April. This expenditure rose to 51.8 billion lira in May. Highlighting an increase of about 11 billion lira in public procurement expenses, Bakırlıoğlu added:

"You cut services for civil servants, removed tea machines from teachers' rooms under the guise of austerity, but you didn't shy away from billions in goods and services procurement. Despite austerity measures, goods and services procurement expenses, which were 40 billion 134 million 706 thousand lira in April, increased to 51 billion 859 million 213 thousand lira in May. Apparently, the raises not given to workers are going towards procurement expenses, extravagant meetings, and luxury rentals. The government continues to live in luxury with its palace and bureaucrats, while the citizens foot the bill."