Cryptocurrencies Stable As Turkey Eyes Digital-Asset Regulation

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has announced that a long-awaited bill regulating digital assets is ready, according to reports in local media. The contents of the bill have not been made public, but it’s expected to be hostile to digital assets, […]


key takeaways

  • The Turkish lira has depreciated by nearly 34% this year as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s plan to stabilize the economy backfired
  • Authorities are looking to clamp down on crypto after continued interest from Turks as a way to preserve wealth in the face of a weakening lira

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has announced that a long-awaited bill regulating digital assets is ready, according to reports in local media. The contents of the bill have not been made public, but it’s expected to be hostile to digital assets, which have been growing in popularity in Turkey as the value of the country’s lira currency has slumped in recent months. 

In March, Blockworks reported that Google searches for bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies were up by nearly 500%. In April, Turkey banned crypto as a form of payment. It remains legal to hold the asset although regulators frequently cite crypto as a form of evasion for capital controls and taxes. 

Turkey’s out-of-control inflation 

Ergodan’s administration has taken a non-conventional approach to monetary policy, refusing to raise interest rates to combat surging inflation, instead preferring to maintain low rates in order to finance cheap borrowing. 

“We’ve put aside the classical understanding of economics that keeps inflation under control with high interest rates,” Bloomberg quoted Erdogan as saying. “We will witness a different economic climate through summer once the financial stability is ensured.”

Inflation, though, has hit record levels, clocking in at 26% in November according to published statistics. 

Market remains stable

On-chain data from Turkey suggests the market doesn’t expect the bill Erdogan is readying for parliament to be overly restrictive. 

The valuation of the Turkish lira against the stablecoin tether is continuing to track the official TRY-USD exchange rate, suggesting traders aren’t trying to dump tether before local exchanges and their ramps get shut down. 

BTCTurkPro, one of the largest domestic exchanges, also reports steady volume, clearing an average of $300 million a day in transactions according to CoinGecko. Volume spiked on December 21 to nearly $1 billion as the lira briefly rallied when Erdogan announced a plan to protect depositors against currency fluctuations leading many traders to take profit against a recovered lira. 

Unrelated to the upcoming crypto bill, Binance, which has a strong presence in Turkey and offers lira-denominated trading pairs, has been fined $750,000 by local authorities for having insufficient money laundering controls in place. 

Erdogan has also announced a change in the country’s name from Turkey to Turkiye, explaining that it reflects “the culture, civilisation, and values of the Turkish nation in the best way.”

Get the day’s top crypto news and insights delivered to your inbox every evening. Subscribe to Blockworks’ free newsletter now.


Upcoming Events

Salt Lake City, UT

WED - FRI, OCTOBER 9 - 11, 2024

Pack your bags, anon — we’re heading west! Join us in the beautiful Salt Lake City for the third installment of Permissionless. Come for the alpha, stay for the fresh air. Permissionless III promises unforgettable panels, killer networking opportunities, and mountains […]

recent research

Research report cover graphics (4).jpg


Despite crypto gaming related projects and funds raising close to a billion dollars in November 2021, there have been only a handful of games that have attracted users apart from mercenary capital, and have had sustained activity for longer than a few months. Crypto gaming is going through an infrastructure phase. Theoretically, crypto gaming stands to benefit from purpose-built, high throughput chains, where blockspace is cheap (especially for games which are fully onchain). However, despite the launch of many gaming-focused chains, most crypto games are lacking in quality and quantity. Most new crypto gaming infrastructure either have no games or only a few games launched (e.g. Xai) or have failed to garner meaningful attention (e.g. Immutable X).


Uniswap Labs said it’s ready to fight back if the SEC takes the crypto firm to court


WisdomTree has gotten FCA approval to list bitcoin and ether ETPs on the London Stock Exchange, the company said Wednesday


It’s ups and downs for Solana’s DEXs, with top players continuing to show diverse performances


The Trump campaign announced that people can make crypto donations in support of the former president


In a 43-page submission published Tuesday, Uniswap made its case to the SEC on why the regulator should not take legal action against them


Fidelity, Ark Invest and Grayscale have so far adjusted proposals to omit plans of staking the funds’ ETH holdings