A Lesson in Geography
President Erdogan, when talking about the Kanal Istanbul project, is fond of comparing it to Suez Canal and Panama Canal, and mentions how they are money generating projects, and Kanal Istanbul will similarly work in our economic benefit.
Below are the three canals and their respective geographies:
The Suez Canal which is the sole waterway connection between the Indian Ocean and the Mediterranean, and the Atlantic Ocean.
The Panama Canal which is the sole waterway connection between the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean.
Kanal Istanbul Project, which is geographically located right next to the Bosporus that connects the Black Sea to the Mediterranean.
Bosporus Straight is an expansive and natural waterway that is 1 -1.5 km wide and 100 meters deep. It is incomparable to an artificial canal that is only 150 meters wide and 25 meters deep. Furthermore, the Montreux Convention of 1936 stipulates that all commercial vessels can pass through Bosporus and the Dardanelles without having to pay any fees. Who, in their right mind, would prefer to use Kanal Istanbul when they have to pay a fee when there is a free and natural passage right next to it? And if you somehow, have the power to change the Montreux Convention and charge the vessels to use the Straits, then there would not be any need for Kanal Istanbul at all.
IN short, even is Kanal Istanbul is built according to the plans, it will bring no public benefit at all; the only people that will benefit from it are the builders and the landowners that are close to the government. Turkey will be left holding nothing other than the 60-billion-dollar debt the project will incur.