A file photo taken on July 30, 2013 shows Turkey's central bank governor Erdem Basci speaking during a press conference in Ankara. AFP PHOTO
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Erdem Basci's biggest accomplishment may be that people still talk about the independence of Turkey's central bank. The 49-year-old former academic was one of the world's most innovative and unpredictable central bankers during a five-year term that ended Tuesday and wasn't renewed. He was also one of the most beleaguered, criticized by investors for missing inflation targets every year, and berated by his prime minister-then-president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, as a traitor, a failure and the government's primary obstacle to reaching ambitious economic goals.When global liquidity was ample and risk appetite high, Basci used the low end of the corridor to cut borrowing costs and keep the currency from appreciating excessively. "The Banker," a monthly financial publication, named him Central Bank Governor of the Year in 2012 .When the U.S. signaled that it would start scaling back monetary stimulus and conditions reversed the following year, Basci used the top end of the corridor to raise costs, bolster the currency and rein in inflation. The International Monetary Fund eventually called on Basci to return to positive real interest rates to close a "credibility gap" over repeated failures to meet his inflation target.No governor will be 100 percent independent, and it would be unrealistic to expect anyone to ignore Erdogan's calls for lower interest rates, the person said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
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