“In Turkey, where double-digit inflation and a falling lira make cryptocurrencies an appealing alternative investment, customers have used them to settle between 5% and 10% of their bills, according to Oner.”
ISTANBUL – Kebab chef Kadir Oner hoped to develop his new business by accepting cryptocurrency payments, but a ban imposed by Turkish authorities would force him to revert to payment methods as old as his spit-roasted meat next month.
In Turkey, where double-digit inflation and a falling lira make cryptocurrencies an appealing alternative investment, customers have used them to settle between 5% and 10% of their bills, according to Oner.
“The world is transitioning to the digital age, and we have to get on board with it,” Oner said, adding that crytopayments were easier than bank transactions and, if allowed to continue, would have accounted for an increasing portion of his doner kebab sales.
However, Turkey’s Central Bank sees the latest practice as dangerous, and on April 16, it announced a ban on the use of cryptocurrencies and crypto assets for transactions beginning April 30, citing “irreparable” harm and transaction risks.
Authorities initiated inquiries into alleged fraud at two cryptocurrency exchanges last week, and Central Bank Governor Sahap Kavcioglu said the Finance Ministry is working on broader cryptocurrency regulations.
Even as cryptocurrencies become more mainstream, they are still underutilized in global commerce, though companies like Tesla Inc and travel platform Expedia Group Inc do accept them.