fbpx
Thursday, May 6, 2021
No menu items!

No more digital doner kebabs as Turkey’s crypto-payment ban looms

Kebab chef Kadir Oner hoped to boost his new business by accepting payment in cryptocurrencies, but a ban by Turkish authorities will force him next month to fall back on payment methods as traditional as his spit-roasted meat.

Interest in cryptocurrencies has boomed in Turkey, where double digit inflation and a tumbling lira make them an attractive alternative investment, and Oner says that customers used them to settle between 5% and 10% of their bills.

“The world is adapting to the digital era and we have to get on board with it,” Oner said adding that crypto-payments were easier than bank transactions and would have accounted for a growing slice of his doner kebab sales if allowed to continue.

But Turkey’s Central Bank sees dangers in the new practice, and has banned the use of cryptocurrencies and crypto assets for purchases from April 30, citing “irreparable” damage and transaction risks.

Authorities last week also launched investigations into possible fraud at two cryptocurrency exchanges, and the Central Bank Governor Sahap Kavcioglu said the Finance Ministry is working on wider regulations regarding cryptocurrencies.

Cryptocurrencies remain little-used for global commerce even as they become increasingly mainstream assets, although companies including Tesla Inc and travel site Expedia Group Inc do accept such payments.

In Turkey, businesses like hairdressers and small grocery shops started accepting payments out of convenience as they also held crypto coins, Altug Isler, the founder of the Kripto Teknik news website said.

If the sector were well regulated, there would be potential for more cryptocurrency transactions, he said, but the central bank had taken the “easiest option” by closing it all down.

Trading volumes in Turkish crypto exchanges spiked on the weekend following the central bank ban on crypto asset payments, according to data from U.S. researcher Chainalysis and trading data firm Kaiko shared with Reuters.

In covered halls of Istanbul’s 15th century Grand Bazaar, cryptocurrency exchange shop Cointral can no longer sell gold for cryptocurrencies, its founder Ugur Hakan Cakan said.

He also had to put on hold a new initiative for e-commerce websites offering crypto asset payments.

(Production: Mehmet Emin Caliskan, Bulent Usta)

Advertisement

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest News

Dow closes at record high after upbeat jobless claims report

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at a record high on Thursday (May 6), bolstered by an...

No plan to shoot down Chinese rocket -Pentagon chief

U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said on Thursday (May 06) there was no plan at this point to shoot down the remnants...

Former Maldives president hurt in blast outside home

Former Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed was injured in a blast outside his family home on Thursday (May 6), police said in a...

UK royal Meghan wins copyright case over letter to father

Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, on Wednesday (05 May) won her outstanding copyright claim against a British tabloid after London's High Court...

Migrants arrive in U.S. after crossing river on a raft from Mexico

Dozens of migrants who had crossed the Rio Grande river into the United States from Mexico on a raft waited beside the...

More Articles Like This