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Turkey Appoints Crypto Expert To Central Bank Policy Committee Turkey Appoints Crypto Expert To Central Bank Policy Committee

Key Takeaways

Turkey has appointed Fatma Ozkul, a crypto assets and blockchain expert, to its central bank’s rate-setting monetary policy committee.

The Appointment

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan appointed professor Fatma Ozkul to the central bank’s rate-setting committee. Her appointment was announced in a decree on December 22. Ozkul has been a lecturer at Istanbul’s Marmara University since 2012, specializing in accounting, finance, and auditing. She authored a book on crypto asset accounting in 2022.

Background

Ozkul joins Turkey’s central bank Monetary Policy Committee, which sets the benchmark interest rate to control inflation. On December 21, the committee increased Turkey’s interest rate by 2.5 percentage points to 42.5% due to an inflation rate of over 61.98% in November.

Turkey and Cryptocurrency

Turkey ranks fourth globally in raw crypto transaction volumes. Between July 2022 and June 2023, Turkey had approximately $170 billion in crypto activity. Over half of the Turkish population engages in the crypto market. The Turkish lira has depreciated by over 50% against the US dollar.

Turkish authorities are considering regulatory measures for the crypto market, focusing on licensing and taxation to align with the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) standards.

Notable Changes

After winning the general election in May, Erdoğan formed a new economic team and appointed Hafize Gaye Erkan, a former Goldman Sachs banker, as the governor of the central bank. In 2022, Turkey’s central bank conducted the initial test of its digital currency, the Digital Turkish Lira.

Women, particularly younger ones, are increasingly participating in the crypto market, with 47% of investors aged 18 to 30 being female.

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