Bitcoin trade volume has surged on cryptocurrency exchanges in Turkey due to an ongoing currency crisis that is exacerbated by the rhetoric of Erdogan. On August 10th, the Turkish Lira sank 16%, bring it down 45% from the same time 12 months before.
Bitcoin trade volume increases
According to data form conimarketcap, Btcturk, Paribu, and Koinim jumped over 100% over the course of 24 hours from August 9th to August 10th. The increases in bitcoin trade volume come at a time when the Turkish Lira is at all-time lows against the US dollar.
Many within the country have already turned to bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, and look at fiat currency with distrust. Turkish lawmakers are considering the creation of a state-backed cryptocurrency. If interest increases, then exchanges could see a crackdown, similar to other regions.
In countries such as Chile, banks have simply decided to stop dealing with cryptocurrency exchange, and court cases are ongoing. In India, the central bank ordered all banks to stop dealing with blockchain related companies, completely killing the industry in the region. However, countries that experience crackdowns like this usually bounce back, DLT being a robust and anti-fragile technology that is typically censorship resistant.
The increase in bitcoin trade volume is something of a side story amid relationships that are rapidly deteriorating in a more serious political picture. Erdogan made a number of public remarks with regard to how the US had disrespected Turkey, in the wake of a recent US decision to sanction two Turkish officials over the detention of Andrew Brunson –
“If the US is turning its back on us…choosing a pastor instead, sorry…we continue our path with decisive steps…This treatment by America of its strategic partner has annoyed us, it has upset us… Failure to reverse this trend of unilateralism and disrespect will require us to start looking for new friends and allies.”
Erdogan also called on citizens to exchange any euros, dollars or gold to Lira to support the country. The controversy of Turkeys already declining currency was made worse by the US President. Trump, rather casually, announced that he was doubling down on Turkish sanctions in a Tweet –
“I have just authorized a doubling of Tariffs on Steel and Aluminum with respect to Turkey as their currency, the Turkish Lira, slides rapidly downward against our very strong Dollar! Aluminum will now be 20% and Steel 50%. Our relations with Turkey are not good at this time!”
Declining political relations and currency wars will encourage or force people to start experimenting with independent currencies such as bitcoin. While the transition may not be completely smooth, the inevitable move from fiat to DLT will ensure the establishment of a more robust, equitable, and transparent financial infrastructure.
Digital Nomad with an interest in Zen and Blockchain technology.
Law graduate with 3 years experience as a consultant in the capital markets industry and 4 years experience freelancing on UpWork as a Creative Writer.