Turkey’s Inflation Research Group (ENAG), an independent institution set up in 2020 to track inflation, has announced that it is under tax audit on the grounds that it failed to report a income of 6 lire.
The founder of ENAG, Professor Veysel Ulusoy, made the announcement on social networks. Ulusoy said the finance minister launched a tax audit against ENAG after receiving “telephone orders”.
6 lira gelirinizi beyan etmemişsiniz diyerek telefon emriyle şahsımıza (ENAG’a) vergi denetimi başlatan maliye bakanına benzer başarılı bir adımı siz adalet bakanından bekliyor bu halk.
Yolsuzluk yoksa herkese bulaşır!
— Pr Veysel Ulusoy (@ekonomikanaliz) August 28, 2022
Earlier this year, the government-run Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK) filed a criminal complaint against Ulusoy on the grounds that he “engages in unfair and heavy-handed attacks” against TÜİK and that the announcement by the ‘ENAG of alternative inflation figures’ is intended to undermine the reliability of the institution.
Ulusoy later announced that the courts had rejected TÜİK’s request for ENAG to stop its operations.
Data from ENAG, whose model was developed by a group of academics and researchers, shows annual inflation in Turkey that is at least double the figures announced by TÜİK.
Opposition lawmakers and economists have questioned the reliability of TÜİK’s numbers, but TÜİK stands by its numbers. Opinion polls show that around 50% of Turks think inflation is much higher than official data.