Turkish Lawmaker Proposes National Cryptocurrency

Wolfie Zhao
Feb 23, 2018 at 03:20 UTC  |  Updated  Feb 23, 2018 at 13:31 UTC

Politicians in Turkey are reportedly looking to launch a national cryptocurrency.

According to a report by Al-Monitor, Ahmet Kenan Tanrikulu, the deputy chair of Turkey's Nationalist Movement Party and the country's former Industry Minister, has drafted a report to propose a state-backed cryptocurrency dubbed "Turkcoin."

Though the technical specifics remain unclear, the lawmaker touts that Turkcoin would aim to tokenize asset-backed securities for the issuance, which he argued would yield lower risks than existing cryptocurrencies.

The report said such asset basket would include large public companies in the country's wealth fund such as Turkish Airlines, the Istanbul Stock Exchange and Turk Telekom.

He told Al-Monitor:

"The world is advancing toward a new digital system. Turkey should create its own digital system and currency before it's too late."

Elsewhere in the report, the lawmaker called for clearer regulation on cryptocurrency in an effort to control the market. He argues that the absence of legal framework over cryptocurrency in Turkey could lead to illicit use.

"The introduction of encouraging regulations after assessing all kinds of risks would enable us to generate revenues from the cryptocurrency market, especially from bitcoin. In this context, the country needs a bitcoin bourse and legislation to regulate this realm," he reportedly said.

Notably, Tanrikulu's comments come weeks after Turkey's Deputy Prime Minister said his government would seek to launch a national cryptocurrency during an interview with CNN Turkey.

Turkey's potential consideration also arrives just days after Venezuela has seen the country's own token sale, through which its President Nicolas Maduro claimed the nation has so far raised $735 million.

Turkish president via Shutterstock

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