World Bulletin / News Desk
İstanbul Chamber of Commerce (İTO) Chairman Murat Yalçıntaş warned on Sunday that the number of bad checks increased to 83,080 from the beginning of the year through May, reaching the highest number in the past two years.
In a written announcement, Yalçıntaş noted that, following the elimination in January of the penalty of imprisonment for those convicted of writing bad checks, the number of these checks has increased by 56.4 percent, bringing the total number of bad checks this year to 344,196, and the bad checks for May amounted to $25.7 billion. He said the precautionary measures taken to prevent businessmen from using bad checks have proved unsatisfactory and the government needs to take further tight measures to prevent a bigger mess.
He suggested the use of financial risk insurance at this point would benefit businesses. He noted that these measures need to be addressed in a speedy manner since businesses would face serious risks. He explained that the measures have clearly not been acting as a deterrent for writers of bad checks. However, he admits the check-fraud reporting system has been beneficial for commerce activities.
Yalçıntaş noted that Turkey has stable economic conditions as opposed to the current difficulties experienced in many countries, in particular Europe. “Turkey has leaped in terms of the economy and it needs the common payment method of checks more than ever. We need to work on fixing the gaps in regulations to secure the rights of businessmen,” he said.
In addition, he recommended the implementation of a system requiring financial risk insurance would guarantee businessmen against the risks of bad checks: “This way the checks can be handed out more freely and recipients of bad checks will be able to be compensated for their losses, providing the continuation of business activities.” Acknowledging that the İTO has made some attempts to spread the use of risk insurance, he stressed that the assessment of the distribution of insurance expenses is of major importance.
Parliament’s General Assembly passed the first three articles of a “bad check” bill at the end of January after making changes to the third article, excluding those who commit fraud from benefitting from the law, which eliminates the penalty of imprisonment for those convicted of writing bad checks.