To make a contribution

The Turkish economy is growing by about 6 percent a year. You could call that positive, but for many Turks it’s hard to see it that way. The official growth doesn’t result in a higher national income or less unemployment. Some Turks still dream of going abroad to increase their standard of living, but more and more young people have no desire to do so. Leaving Turkey? Going to Europe? Such a stupid idea! As if there were jobs growing on trees in Europe. As if it would be easy to settle in a part of the world where foreigners, especially from Muslim countries, are regarded with more and more suspicion. Take Yasemin, as of this week my official assistant. She’s studying at one of the best universities in the country, and she’s confident of finding a good job. She went to Germany for a year to study, and that was wonderful, but she missed Turkey and Istanbul. The vibrant city, the young population, the feeling of being part of a rapidly developing country . Europe on the other hand is old, slow, less vibrant. She, and many men and women of her age group, have no dream of going to Europe. Their dream is to make a career and a life here. To make a contribution, so Turkey can really grow.  

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