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Turkey eyes 0.03% tax on digital asset transactions: report

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Turkey is planning to impose new taxes on digital asset transactions as part of its most extensive tax overhaul in decades, a new report says.

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s government seeks to raise 226 billion lira ($7 billion) in its new tax proposals to plug a budget deficit caused by last year’s catastrophic earthquake, which claimed over 50,000 lives.

The tax measures will be presented to parliament by the Treasury and Finance Ministry, led by Mehmet Simsek, Bloomberg reports, citing sources within the government.

The new taxes, which would be the most drastic overhauls since 1999, mainly target corporates—which the government expects to churn out an extra 130 billion lira—and real estate trusts.

However, the government also proposes a new 0.03% tax on all digital asset transactions. According to projections by the Finance Ministry, this would add 3.7 billion lira ($110 million) to the country’s coffers.

The new tax comes just two weeks after Minister Simsek claimed that the government didn’t intend to tax profits from stocks or digital assets. However, he pledged to tax stock transactions as part of the government’s aim to “leave no area untaxed in order to provide justice and effectiveness in taxation.”

A few days later, the minister revealed that the government would not be imposing the tax on stock transactions after receiving widespread criticism from the public.

“We are postponing the draft tax study for the stock exchange for a while to re-evaluate it in light of feedback from all relevant parties,” Simsek said.

Turkey is one of the world’s largest digital asset markets. It ranked 12th for adoption last year, with a report by the KuCoin exchange last September claiming that over half of all adult Turks own some digital asset.

This aligns with a broader global trend where countries whose economies experienced the highest inflation recorded increased digital asset adoption. Last year, Turkey was fifth for inflation, with Venezuela, Zimbabwe and Argentina ranking at the top. The three countries have also recorded high adoption as residents turn to digital assets to escape inflation.

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