The Republic of Turkey’s Central Bank has made agreements with a number of companies to develop the Digital Turkish Lira Collaboration Platform.
With a research and development effort that could see the Turkish lira go digital, the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey (CBRT) has taken a huge step forward.
CBRT stated on Wednesday that it has signed memorandums of understanding with three local research and technology firms to develop the “Digital Turkish Lira Collaboration Platform.” As the initiative progresses, the number of participants is projected to grow.
Aselsan, a significant defense firm, Havelsan, a software and systems developer in the defense and IT sectors, and TÜBTAK Informatics and Information Security Research Center are the three original technological stakeholders.
Participants in the project will assist CBRT in the development and testing of a prototype digital lira network.
While the announcement does not go into detail about the project’s technological foundation, it does note the prospect that it would eventually include “blockchain technology, the usage of distributed ledgers in payment systems, and integration with immediate payment systems.”
The digital lira project, like the digital euro initiative, does not commit to the ultimate digitization of Turkey’s currency, as the document states, “The CBRT has made no final decision regarding the issuance of the digital Turkish lira.”
The tests are planned to be completed in 2022, after which CBRT will determine whether the technology fits the requirements for continued implementation.
The Turkish central bank outlawed cryptocurrency payments and limited the breadth of financial services available to bitcoin entrepreneurs earlier this summer. A legislative vote on a bill to ensure regulatory certainty surrounding digital assets is still pending.