Banks in Turkey
The banking sector forms a great part of the Turkish financial system in its dynamic economy. Most of the transactions and activities of money and capital markets are carried out by banks. Most State banks were established to finance a particular industry such as agriculture for example (Ziraat Bank), but private banks generally have close connections to large industrial groups and holdings.
The Central Bank, founded in the early 1930s, has the usual central bank responsibilities, such as issuing banknotes, protecting the currency, and regulating the banking system and credit. The Central Bank also finances the government's budget deficits and makes loans to public and private banks. But after 1983 the Central Bank began to reduce lending and stepped up its supervisory functions.
Before 1980 there were only 4 foreign banks in Turkey, but their number grew rapidly during the 1980s as the Turgut Ozal government liberalized conditions and today there are almost 50 of them. During these years a series of reforms were adopted to promote financial market development; interest and foreign exchange rates were liberalized, new entrants to the banking system were permitted and foreign banks were encouraged to operate in Turkey.
All banks in Turkey are subject to the Banks Act and to the provisions of other laws regarding to banks. The new Law brought the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BRSA, or Turkish BDDK) into life to safeguard the rights and benefits of depositors. The Banks Association of Turkey (BAT, or Turkish TBB) is the representative body of the banking sector in Turkey established for protecting and promoting the professional interests of its members.
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