Turkcoin: Turkish Politician Calls For National Cryptocurrency “Before It’s Too Late”

  • A Turkish lawmaker recently argued for the creation of a national cryptocurrency "before it's too late"
  • The token, dubbed 'Turkcoin' would be backed by the country's wealth fund.
  • The lawmaker sees it as a way to generate revenue for the country

Ahmet Kenan Tanrikulu, a Turkish lawmaker affiliated with a political party partnering with the country’s ruling party, recently argued for a national cryptocurrency named ‘Turkcoin’, reasoning that the world is “advancing toward a new digital system,” and that Turkey should create its own cryptocurrency and digital system “before it’s too late.”

Tanrikulu, Turkey’s former industry minister and deputy chair of the Nationalist  Movement Party (MHP), according to local news outlet Al Monitor, drafted a 22-page report calling for the government-controlled cryptocurrency.

Details on the report are scarce, as it wasn’t yet released to the public. It reveals that Turkey’s national cryptocurrency, the Turkcoin, would resemble asset-backed securities from Turkey’s Wealth Fund. By using large public assets such as Turkish Airlines, the Istanbul Stock Exchange, and the Ziraat bank, among others, the politician argued the cryptocurrency would have a type of “insurance policy” and would appreciate along with the country’s wealth fund.

Moreover, being backed by these assets would ensure the cryptocurrency isn’t extremely volatile, or too risky of an investment. This would make Turkcoin a low-risk investment with higher returns than sovereign bonds, which would make the cryptocurrency attractive to investors.

The report has an overview of the current cryptocurrency industry in the country, in Turkey, trading and mining cryptocurrencies isn’t illegal, Tanrikulu noted. Yet, the lawmaker called for regulations as “many enterprises accept payments in cryptocurrencies and the number of customers using those currencies is rapidly increasing.”

The report reads:

“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.”

Ahmet Kenan Tanrikulu

Tanrikulu’s report is notable, as not long ago Turkey’s ruling party likened cryptocurrencies to pyramid schemes. The country’s religious leader declared bitcoin “un-Islamic,” although the Turkish Penal Code doesn’t prohibit citizens from using the cryptocurrency.

Turkey isn’t the only country looking to get in on the cryptocurrency space. Iran, as reported, recently rejected bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, while revealing it may soon issue its own cryptocurrency. Venezuela, a country facing one of the deepest recessions ever, also launched an oil-backed token dubbed the “Petro.”

Steemit Moves to Limit Justin Sun’s Influence after Its Acquisition

Justin Sun, the founder of TRON, has announced he was going to acquire Steemit earlier this month, and shortly after those currently running the Steem blockchain executed a soft fork to limit his voting influence.

In a blog post describing the move, Steem’s witnesses [similar to bitcoin miners or EOS block producers] detailed that while it’s exciting to see a well-resourced entity get involved with Steemit, the witnesses are now moving to ensure the security of the Steem blockchain. The blog post reads:

To this end, we have updated to a temporary protective protocol to maintain the status quo currently established in regards to Steemit Inc's stake and its intended usage.

Steem is a delegated proof-of-stake (DPoS) blockchain, similar to EOS, in which a small number of entities – the witnesses – work to protect the blockchain and represent the community. The soft fork was deemed necessary because Steemit owns a large amount of STEEM tokens that could be used to take over the blockchain.

Given Justin Sun’s move to acquire Steemit, it’s believed he now owns those tokens and could use them to move Steemit in a specific direction. The soft fork blocks STEEM held by specific accounts from voting on who governs the network and from participating in ways that could see it seize control.

While the tokens have always been there, when co-founder Ned Scott ran the platform the community was comfortable with his approach to governance. Justin Sun has responded to the soft fork with an open letter to the Steemit community, in which he explains some of his potential plans for the Steemit platform itself.

The post reads:

We have so much to work to do to make Steemit.com the power that it really can be. And there are many ways we can get it there, from bridging TRX, TRC10’s and TRC20’s into Communities to marketing and growing Steemit.com. From invitations and referrals to simpler and instant signups.

Sun added his plans would also include listing STEEM on other major cryptocurrency exchanges and attracting large influencers to the platform, which is a mix of Reddit and Medium. He added he is organizing a summit called STEEMit 2.0 Town Hall, where he’s inviting the top 50 witnesses to participate.

It’s worth noting the Steem blockchain has several decentralized applications built on top of it, with Steemit being the most influential one.

Featured image by Ludovic Charlet on Unsplash.