Türkiye bans layoffs, extends salary support for earthquake zone

Türkiye Materials 23 February 2023 07:46 (UTC +04:00)
Türkiye bans layoffs, extends salary support for earthquake zone

Türkiye banned layoffs and unveiled a temporary wage support scheme in 10 provinces, aimed at safeguarding workers and businesses in the aftermath of the devastating earthquakes that jolted the southeastern region earlier this month, Trend reports citing Daily Sabah.

The moves are a part of the government's steps to minimize the economic impact of Türkiye's worst disaster in modern history.

The massive Feb. 6 quakes, centered in southern Kahramanmaras province, have left at least 42,310 people dead, according to Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD), and severely hit neighboring Syria.

Some 13.5 million people, or over 15% of the country's population, live across the 10 quake-hit provinces, where authorities said over 139,000 buildings were either destroyed or so severely damaged that they need to be torn down.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said 865,000 people were living in tents, 23,500 in containers, while 376,000 were in student dormitories and public guesthouses outside the earthquake zone as of Tuesday. Some 270 tent cities have been set up in the affected provinces.

Under Ankara's new economic relief plan, employers whose workplaces were "heavily or moderately damaged" will benefit from support to partially cover wages of workers whose hours had been cut, the country's Official Gazette said on Wednesday.

A ban on layoffs was introduced in 10 earthquake-hit provinces covered by a state of emergency. The region accounts for close to 10% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).