BRSA starts the digital era in banking

The Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BRSA) is putting into effect its new regulation for digital banks that will operate without branches.

The new regulation of the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BRSA) for digital banks that will operate without branches, “Regulation on the Operational Principles of Digital Banks and Service Model Banking” was published in today’s issue of the Official Gazette.

The regulation, which determines the operating principles of digital banking and will enter into force as of January 1, 2022, aims to facilitate access to banking services and increase financial inclusion.

According to the regulation, digital banks will be able to carry out all the activities that credit institutions can perform, depending on whether they are deposit or participation banks. Credit customers of digital banks can only consist of financial consumers and SMEs.

Digital banks will not be able to organize under any name, such as correspondent, agency, representation, other than the head office and service units affiliated to the head office, cannot open physical branches, and cannot make service units affiliated to the general directorate use as physical branches for any purpose other than their intended purpose. These banks will also not be able to offer safe deposit boxes, custodial transactions and custody services, except for those that will be carried out in the digital environment.

The total of unsecured cash consumer loans that digital banks can make available to a customer will not exceed 4 times the monthly average net income of the relevant customer declared and confirmed by digital banks, and ₺10 thousand if the customer’s average monthly net income cannot be determined. The Board shall be authorized to change the rate and amount specified in this provision.

The banks in question must have a paid-in capital of at least ₺1 billion in order to obtain an operating license. This amount may be increased by the Board. Upon the application of digital banks, which have increased the required minimum paid-in capital amount to ₺2 billion 500 million, the Board will be able to remove the operational restrictions for digital banks that it believes can manage their risks in the new situation, either completely or gradually within the framework of a transition plan it deems appropriate.

After the application is approved by the Board and the activity restrictions are completely removed, digital banks will be able to perform all banking activities that other credit institutions can do within the framework of the relevant legislation.

Digital banks, which are required to establish at least one physical office to handle customer complaints, will be able to serve their customers through ATM networks they will establish themselves or other ATM networks.

Within the scope of the regulation, provisions regarding service model banking were also determined. Accordingly, the service bank will be able to provide service model banking services only to domestic interface providers and only within the framework of its own operating permits. Banks will not be interface providers.


In the statement made by the BRSA, it was stated that digital banks, which will start a new transformation in the banking sector, can only serve through digital channels without branches, “After the new regulation comes into effect, these banks, which will only serve their customers through digital channels, will be able to start operating in the sector from next year, if they apply to the BRSA and obtain the necessary permissions.

The introduction of these banks, which will only serve through digital channels without branches, and the fact that they enable numerous innovative business models through service banking, is an important turning point for the development of our country’s finance sector and fintech ecosystem.”

Source: NTV / Translated by Irem Yildiz

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