Turkish private lender Akbank’s CEO Kaan Gür announced that the bank plans to invest $200 million (TL 6.14 billion) in technology in 2024. Gür also mentioned that a budget of $600 million has been allocated for technology investment over the next three years. Changes to regulations in early February have eased cost pressures for banks, which is expected to increase the appetite for loans. Gür noted that a portion of loan requests are transitioning from Turkish lira to foreign currency.
Moreover, Gür stated that interest rates have reached a level that will support conversions from FX-protected accounts (KKM) to Turkish lira accounts. The Turkish central bank started rolling back the KKM scheme last August to promote lira deposits and has been implementing measures to discourage companies and individuals from renewing these accounts. The scheme, introduced in late 2021, aimed to prevent dollarization by incentivizing people to keep their savings in lira through guarantees to compensate for losses from declines against hard currencies.
Additionally, the Central Bank of Republic of Türkiye (CBRT) Governor Fatih Karahan reported a decrease in the volume of KKM accounts in recent months, with a simultaneous increase in Turkish lira deposits. Karahan stated that Turkish lira deposits increased by TL 2.4 trillion in the last five months, while KKM volume decreased by TL 910 billion, as he presented this year’s first inflation report. The central bank implemented a shift toward more conventional policymaking last year and conducted a series of interest rate hikes that raised the policy rate from 8.5% to the current 45%. In its last policy meeting, the bank signaled that the tightening cycle was complete.