Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's "White Palace" is more than 1/2 billion US dollars and his jet is $185 million

    Tuesday, November 04, 2014   No comments

Ak Saray (white palace), which President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will use as his new presidential building, cost more than TL 1 billion, Finance Minister Mehmet Şimşek has announced.

Responding to questions by opposition lawmakers during budget talks in Parliament late on Monday, Şimşek said the new building cost TL 1.37 billion ($615 million). Stating that TL 964 million has already been spent on Ak Saray, Şimşek said the government allocated TL 300 million for the building from the 2015 budget.

Constructed inside the Atatürk Forest Farm (AOÇ) on an area of 300,000 square meters in Ankara, Ak Saray has been at the center of strong criticism for being oversized for the presidential post, which is symbolic in Turkey.


Ak Saray may even be touted as the world's largest residential palace. The Guinness World Records currently lists the Istana Nurul Iman palace of the sultan of Brunei, in Bandar Seri Begawan, as the world's largest residential palace with 200,000 square meters of floor space. Completed in 1984, the Brunei sultan's palace cost 300 million pounds, which was equivalent to $422 million at the time, or $970 million today.

The word “Ak” in the name Ak Saray also refers to the name of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party).

Şimşek also announced the cost of the new presidential jet, an Airbus A330-200 Prestige, during the budget talks, saying the jet cost $185 million. Noting that the government has not yet paid for the jet, which was purchased by Turkish Airlines (THY), Şimşek said the Prime Ministry will pay THY this year.
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Ed Isr

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