Bitcoin Price Drop: Turkey moves to ban cryptopayments

The latest move in the cryptocurrency world comes from the Turkish government, who look to enforce a ban on the use of cryptocurrencies by the end of April. The news has affected the price of Bitcoin (BTC), but won’t cause too many problems for crypto holders as the price remains upwards of $60,000.  

The Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey (CBRT) claims the digital currency has a lack of “supervision mechanisms” and “central authority regulations”, which equates to a lack of regulation outright. Major cryptocurrency exchanges like Bitfinex have seen a flurry of trades of BTC and altcoins as a result of this decision. Like many other exchanges, Bitfinex will offer reviewed prices on trades as a result of recent legislation in the Middle East. 

It’s certainly nothing new to learn that cryptocurrencies operate within a very volatile market. The CBRT cited that the use of crypto is “excessively volatile” and digital wallets storing large amounts of funds are not safe and can be stolen or used for unlawful purposes.

From the outset, BTC was labelled as something for the underground and a means of paying for illegal operations. However, the rise in price of BTC, coupled with the public acceptance has made it something that major financial institutions and big name CEOs have turned to as a means of investment. 

What next for crypto assets?

The decision from the CBRT seems counterproductive, given that many major global businesses are now moving to provide crypto as a means of payment for a variety of different products—namely the announcement from Tesla CEO and tech tycoon Elon Musk, who has now offered payment for his electric vehicles using Bitcoin within the US.

Elon Musk is known for his gimmicky business moves and products. But, as one of the richest men in the world and someone who invested a staggering $1.5 billion into BTC back in February, he’s a businessman who is willing to follow through with his claims.

Moreover, Musk has now offered an online BTC payment service through PayPal, allowing customers to complete transactions using a variety of major cryptocurrencies. While governments and traditional investment giants like Warren Buffet continue to cast shade on the crypto movement. It seems the momentum of blockchain cannot be ceased.

The announcement from PayPal is not the first of its kind, many fintech startups are now offering crypto payment services for numerous altcoins, not just the likes of Ethereum and Bitcoin. Fintech has become one of the fastest-growing and most exciting tech markets, with billions being invested in businesses around the world and companies looking to occupy every possible area of the crypto sphere. 

While this is very exciting, Turkey isn’t alone in their moves to try and cull the growing public interest in cryptocurrency ownership. India was the first country to try and regulate usage, with a legislative bill in the process of being pushed through, which could result in fines being handed out to those that choose to continue to manage their finances using crypto. 

Crypto enthusiasts cite these kinds of moves as hypocritical, as the Indian government is set to propose the use of blockchain to create their own government-approved cryptocoin. The belief is that governments aren’t against the use of digital finance, but rather they want control over it. 

Many would argue that this is contradictory to the whole purpose of blockchain and cryptocurrency, as it gives the power to the user and takes away the necessity for government approval and public money being regulated by financial institutions. The lack of trust in financial institutions after years of scandals and recessions, like we saw between 2007-2009 after the US housing market crashed, is a big part of why crypto is so popular today.