Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has just appointed Fatma Ozkul, a professor specializing in crypto-assets and blockchain, to the Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Turkey. This decision, announced by presidential decree on December 22, comes in the context of high inflation in Turkey and the dynamics of the Turkish crypto market.
Erdogan has chosen a cryptocurrency expert to serve on the board of the central bank
Since 2012, Fatma Ozkul has been teaching at Marmara University in Istanbul. His extensive academic research covers key areas such as accounting, finance and auditing, but also focuses on recent innovations including blockchain and digital assets. It also signed a reference work on crypto accounting in 2022.
His appointment to the body responsible for setting Turkey’s central bank’s key rate comes at an opportune time as Turkey seeks to stem soaring inflation. The Monetary Board also raised its key rate by 2.5 percentage points to 42.5% on December 21.
In addition, the arrival of Fatma Ozkul is part of the continuity of policies established since Erdogan’s re-election as Turkish president in May 2022. Indeed, the head of state has made changes at the head of the central bank, appointing former Goldman Sachs banker Hafez Gaye Erkan to the post of governor.
The arrival of Fatma Ozkul should not fundamentally change the direction of Turkish monetary policy. However, it reflects Turkey’s desire to take a position in blockchain financial and monetary innovation.
Cryptocurrency boom in Turkey
According to a report from Chainalysis, Turkey ranks 4th in the world in crypto transaction volumes. Between July 2022 and June 2023, at least $170 billion worth of cryptocurrency trading was recorded in the country.
In the face of this general enthusiasm, authorities are increasing cryptocurrency initiatives. The central bank launched a platform dedicated to digital transactions with the Turkish lira in 2021. At the end of 2022, it conducted proof-of-concept tests of this digital currency.
In terms of regulation, the government is now planning to strictly regulate the crypto sector to prevent potential abuse. It focuses on the licensing of players as well as their taxation. This dual objective aims to both limit the risks of fraudulent use of cryptocurrencies and at the same time remove Turkey from the “grey list” of the International Financial Action Task Force (FATF).
The intended new rules could thus impose stricter requirements on players in terms of fairness, digital security or asset preservation.
Regulation that is both flexible and protective will be necessary for Turkey to take full advantage of the cryptocurrency-driven financial revolution. And Ozkul’s presence at the heart of monetary institutions will enable it to provide all the expertise necessary to make this financial transition.
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I am passionate about Bitcoin, I love exploring the intricacies of blockchain and cryptocurrency and sharing my discoveries with the community. My dream is to live in a world where privacy and financial freedom are guaranteed for everyone, and I firmly believe that Bitcoin is the tool that can make this possible.
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