Wall Street Journal reported that Turkey is expanding the use of Turkish lira in parts of Syria it controls, and the use of Turkish currency has got ahead of plummeting Syrian pound.
Turkey’s pro-government think tank Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research (SETA) official Ömer Özkızılcık made statements for the Wall Street Journal on the issue. “Turkey’s capital Ankara sent Turkish liras to exchange and post offices in Idlib and other parts of northern Syria the last month. Syrian people are exchanging Syrian pounds and sometimes US dollars for Turkish liras,” said Özkızılcık.
According to the journal, the Syrian pound has fallen by 70% since the beginning of 2020, while TRY has fallen by 16%. “Turkish currency is being introduced to the local economy to benefit from economic uncertainty in Syria, and controlling approximately 5% of the country, Turkey is rendering payments to Syrian ‘opponents’ and bureaucrats in TRY,” reported the journal.
On the other hand, the Central Bank of the Turkish Republic, and Turkey’s Ministry of Economy have declared that the transfer of Turkish liras to Syria is not within their knowledge.
Over the past several years, Turkey’s postal service PTT has opened 11 branches in northern Syria, including in Afrin, Azaz, al-Rai, Marea, Jarablus, al-Bab, Ras al-Ain and Tell Abyad.