Currency exchangers at the Istanbul Grand Bazaar have become popular not only among tourists, but also among large companies, writes Bloomberg.
The reason is the request of the Central Bank of the country not to sell dollars to corporate clients. According to the agency, state-owned companies also use the services, for example, the oil and gas company BOTAS, one of the market leaders in energy trading in the country.
In the bazaar itself, the currency is carried in large safes, accompanied by guards. The dollar is sold on the market with about a 5 percent premium to the official one. If on the stock exchange it can be bought for 19.4082 lira, then in the exchanger for 20.4. At the same time, the owners of points expect that the national currency will greatly depreciate after the presidential elections, which are scheduled for May 14.
The Turkish lira from the fall of 2021 to April 2023 fell by more than 2 times: from about 8–9 lira per dollar to 19–20 lira per dollar, the official inflation in the country at the end of 2022 was 64.27%. This encourages citizens and companies to buy a more stable currency, and the Central Bank’s policy towards companies only increases demand.
The Grand Bazaar is located in the heart of Istanbul in the historic Fatih district. This is one of the oldest and largest markets in the world.