Turkey's Energy Market Regulatory Authority (EMRA) announced on Wednesday that it will change to local currency in natural gas distribution tenders.
EMRA will switch to Turkish lira rather than the U.S. dollar in the next three natural gas distribution tenders, following President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's call to support the declining Turkish currency against the U.S. dollar.
The Turkish energy watchdog will go put out to tender natural gas distribution on Dec. 26 for the eastern cities of Agri and Tuneli and on Dec. 28 for another eastern district of Dogubayazit.
Tender participants will offer their bid in the auction using Turkish kurus per-kilowatt-hour rather than U.S. dollar cent per-kilowatt-hour.
Earlier on Friday, Erdogan called on Turkish citizens to convert their foreign exchange savings into lira and gold to help boost the value of the local currency.
The U.S. dollar/Turkish lira exchange rate which stood at 3.543 at 5.00 p.m. (14.00 GMT) Friday, decreased to 3.429 at 11.51 Wednesday noon.
On Tuesday, the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey hosted a press conference to give details about the bank's 2017 monetary and exchange-rate policy.
Speaking at the conference, Central Bank Governor Murat Cetinkaya said, "We will continue to support the local currency as the medium of exchange in economic activities."
"If these fluctuations [in exchange rates] have serious and permanent impacts over the essentials of the economy and specifically price stability, the Central Bank naturally would not be indifferent to these developments," Cetinkaya added.
Several Turkish institutions and administrations also announced that they will switch to liras in tenders and in their funds, including Turkey's Directorate of Privatization Administration, Istanbul Stock Exchange and the Defense Industry Support Fund of the Defense Ministry.
One Turkish lira is equal to 100 kurus.
By Muhsin Baris Tiryakioglu