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The year 2007 was a perfect storm for Turkey

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“Countries don’t disappear, it has been said, but sometimes they encounter perfect storms,” wrote Jorge Castaneda, a Mexican politician and academic, the other day in the New York Times. “These do not threaten their existence, yet they can represent major challenges to their welfare and integrity.” The year 2007 was such a year for Turkey. Let me explain why it is important today.

A group of researchers at the Paris School of Economics started a rather important project in 2017 called the World Inequality Lab, which housed more than thirty researchers led by people like Thomas Piketty and Emmanuel Saez. It is nice to see the French are becoming more interested in issues beyond their borders. Perhaps this is fuelled by the same force that brought us Macron. Either way, the World Inequality Lab is publishing a yearly World Inequality Report as its flagship project. The first issue of the report was out last December and includes information on the income and wealth distribution of 57 countries, including Turkey and the United States. If you are wondering how much of your country’s wealth is held by your top 1 percent, google this guidebook.

I find the Turkish figures rather telling. The national income share of the top 1 percent of Turks was around 28.3 percent in 1994,........

© Hürriyet Daily News