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08/19/2008, Turkey - "Turkey to abandon daylight saving time in 2011", Turkish Daily News

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Turkey to abandon daylight saving time in 2011

Turkey might adjust its daylight-saving time in two years in an effort to decrease energy consumption and increase quality of life, according to a proposal to shift the country's time zone by 30 minutes.

Despite the Foreign Ministry's opposition, the Energy Ministry readies to actualize plans to amend Turkey's standard meridian, which is used to adjust the country's seasonal time.

The time lag between the east and west of Turkey is an hour and 16 minutes. When sunset is at an early hour, especially in the eastern regions, it can adversely affect people in terms of social, psychological and economic conditions, according to the Energy Ministry's proposal.

If the Cabinet approves the changes in the law, clocks will be adjusted forward half an hour beginning from 2011 and will not be shifted back again. Authorities are still working on technical aspects of the application.

Meanwhile, the Foreign Ministry continues its opposition, arguing that removing daylight time will adversely affect Turkey's trade relations with Europe. However, Energy Ministry officials advocate for their proposal claiming that the new application will decrease energy consumption rates especially in eastern provinces.

The starting date for the new application was initially planned for March 29, 2009. However the date caused a backlash among international business sectors including airports, banks and stock exchange, and the Energy Ministry decided to grant two years for adaptation.

The Energy Ministry proposed to adopt the Greenwich Mean Time +2.5 time zone, or GMT +2.5, throughout the year and to adjust the time according to the 37.5 degree Eastern longitude that passes through Ordu, Fatsa and Gaziantep.

Currently, Turkey's standard meridian in winter is the Greenwich Mean Time +2 time zone, which is demarcated by the 30 degrees Eastern longitude that passes through Izmit province. In the summer, time is adjusted to GMT +3 at the 45 degrees Eastern longitude that passes through Igdir. Winter time is applied for five months and summer time is applied for seven months.

Daylight-saving time unpopular in the world

While European Union countries, the United States, Canada, Mexico, Chile and Egypt apply daylight-saving time, 77 percent of the world's population (approximately 4.5 billion people) do not. When the general application is observed, countries adjust their time according to the meridians passing through the east of their territories. For example; Greece and Bulgaria take use the 30 degree Eastern longitude passing through Izmit province in Turkey during winter while 45 degree Eastern longitude passing through Igdir province is efficient in adjusting their time during summer.

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