Turkey wants to establish the name Türkiye internationally

In the future, Turkey will also use the Turkish country name “Türkiye” in foreign languages. As early as December 2021, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan issued a presidential decree that only this term should be used in official language within the state. A new communication campaign is now intended to make “Türkiye” more common internationally.

On June 1, the Turkish news agency Anadolu Agency announced that the official name change had been registered with the United Nations. A spokesman for the organization confirmed receipt of a corresponding letter from the Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusolgu, in which he calls for his state to be called “Turkiye” in the future. With the receipt of the letter, the name change has already officially become effective.

Official texts from Turkish authorities and ministries have been using the new designation for a long time. Two years ago it was also decided to change the designation of origin affixed to export goods from “Made in Turkey” to “Made in Türkiye”. In order to establish the term in other countries as well, the Communications Office launched a campaign at the beginning of January 2022 to address an international audience. As the Neue Zürcher Zeitung writes, an advertising film entitled “Hello Türkiye” has already been produced and presented in this context.

Strengthen identity

According to Turkey’s President, “Turkiye” best reflects the culture and values ​​of the state, and spreading the term around the world is also intended to promote its reputation, identity and brand. According to Erdogan, the new name will not only replace the German “Turkey”, but primarily the English “Turkey”. Its unfavorable ambiguity is a thorn in the side of the Turkish government, as it means not only the state on the Bosporus but also Turkey – which is in no way connected to Turkey.

Official name change still unclear

According to a report by the NZZ, however, it is not yet clear whether the efforts to influence the campaign will be followed by an official name change. This would have to be registered with the United Nations, but the information office in Ankara has not yet been able to provide any information about such plans. Turkey is by no means the first country to seek a name change on the international stage. In the past, Burma became Myanmar, Swaziland became Eswatini and Macedonia became North Macedonia.