Turkey announces sharp tariffs on USA goods

TURKEY USA ECONOMIC CRISIS

READ MOREWhat's behind the current US-Turkey spat

Washington has imposed financial sanctions on two Turkish ministers and doubled steel and aluminum tariffs on Turkey, as U.S. President Donald Trump tries to secure the release Andrew Brunson, an American pastor being tried in Turkey on espionage and terrorism-related charges.

Tensions between the two North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies have been strained amid Turkey's detention of an American pastor and other diplomatic actions.

The decree, which was signed by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, raised tariffs on alcoholic beverages by 140%, on tobacco by 60%, and on passenger cars by 120%.

The tariff increases amount to a doubling of the existing rate, the state-run Anadolu news agency said, in an apparent parallel response to Trump's move.

Qatar on Wednesday promised to make a $15 billion direct investment in Turkey, badly hit by a currency crisis amid a widening diplomatic standoff with the United States, officials said. "The fundamentals of the Turkish economy are robust and Turkey will emerge stronger from this process", Ibrahim Kalin wrote.

Qatari Ambassador to Turkey Salem bin Mubarak Al Shafi said his country would continue supporting Turkey following recently-imposed USA sanctions on the country.

He also made his now famous speech on the night of the July 2016 failed coup calling citizens out into the street through FaceTime, an iPhone app. It was trading 0.7 percent lower at 6.33948 per dollar at 9:25 a.m.in Istanbul. "We have other partnerships and alternative markets".

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan meets with Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani in Ankara, Turkey August 15, 2018.

Erdogan was due to speak on the phone with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday and French President Emmanuel Macron on Thursday, the presidency said.

Turkish media reports say a Turkish court has rejected an appeal for the release of an American pastor from detention.

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