[Opening speech by President Suleyman Demirel for the meeting "Population Issues in Turkey: Policy Priorities"]

Nufusbil Derg. 1994;16:107-12.
[Article in Turkish]


PIP: Mr. Demirel says that at the root of all problems faced by society is population growth. He points out that with an annual population growth of about 2.5%, Turkey's standard of living will be low even if it is possible to feed the growing population, and he says Turkey's first goal should be to create public awareness of individual responsibilities. In this task, Mr. Demirel adds, the government, the parliament, educational institutions, the media, voluntary organizations, and scientists all have a role to play. Mr. Demirel states that Turkey's second goal should be to bring down the rate of population growth to around 1% within 20 years. The country's third goal, according to Mr. Demirel, should be to reduce the proportion of the population dependent on agriculture, since population growth is highest in rural areas and migration into urban areas is taxing city resources and creating slum communities. Mr. Demirel adds that dependence on agriculture will not create wealth for a nation and says that the goal should be to reduce Turkey's approximately 50% dependence on agriculture to about 10%, also within 20 years. Mr. Demirel goes on to point out that 50% of Turkey's population remains outside the social security umbrella and that in rural areas children represent a family's security during old age. It is therefore imperative to expand the social security umbrella. Turkey's fourth goal, as put forth by Mr. Demirel, should be to ensure orderly development. To increase the standard of living, the rate of population growth must be reduced while increasing the rate of development. He adds that it is also important to improve the distribution of wealth. This, says Mr. Demirel, is his fifth goal and can be achieved by overcoming the regional differences in rates of development with the aim of directing the inevitable migration from rural areas to nearby small cities, away from the large cities of Ankara, Istanbul, and Izmir. Mr. Demirel says that it will take time to achieve these goals, but that it is possible if the State adopts these goals as a national policy and if the Turkish people adopt the same goals as their own.

Publication types

  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Agriculture*
  • Asia
  • Asia, Western
  • Demography
  • Developing Countries
  • Economics
  • Education
  • Emigration and Immigration
  • Financial Management
  • Financing, Government
  • Health Planning Guidelines*
  • Population
  • Population Dynamics*
  • Population Growth*
  • Public Policy*
  • Sex Education*
  • Social Security*
  • Socioeconomic Factors*
  • Turkey