Bitcoin legal tender in El Salvador
Bitcoin legal tender in El Salvador
El Salvador was the first country in the world to introduce Bitcoin as legal tender. Congress approved President Nayib Bukele’s proposal to encourage investment and economic development.
Bukele is known for his love of technology. He was elected president two years ago with an overwhelming majority and is also known for his extraordinary approaches. Before that he was mayor of the capital San Salvador, which is why he can be described as having media experience.
The President hopes that this extraordinary move will make it easier for Salvadorans living abroad to send money home. In 2019 that was 6 billion dollars, 20% of the gross domestic product. In addition, the move could further increase tourism and awareness of the country.
The enthusiasm for the “Bitcoin” project does not meet with approval everywhere, however.
Father José María Tojeira, director of the Human Rights Institute at the University of Central America, said very few Salvadorans had the technical means to access bitcoins.
“The decision is rather incomprehensible. It seems more about making a show – which is a characteristic of this government: lots of propaganda, but few structural changes to help the impoverished population,” he said.
David Morales, of the Cristosal human rights group, described the legislation as “political marketing” … https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/jun/09/el-salvador-bitcoin-legal-tender-congress.
Nevertheless, a positive impact of making Bitcoin legal tender in El Salvador is quite conceivable.
Bukele said the country is already developing a mining center that will use “very cheap, 100% clean, 100% renewable” energy from volcanoes to power the operations needed to mine Bitcoin.
“Our engineers just informed me that they dug a new well,” Bukele tweeted, saying it would generate 95 megawatts of energy — enough to power more than 500 homes for a year. “What you see coming out of the well is pure water vapor.” https://nypost.com/2021/06/11/el-salvador-volcanoes-to-power-bitcoin-mining/
Bitcoin legal tender in El Salvador – Conclusion
It remains to be seen whether the move to Bitcoin was the right one for El Salvador. One thing is for sure, this step has definitely helped the acceptance of the cryptocurrency and it has made a good leap up since the announcement. Bitcoin is still on everyone’s lips and I wouldn’t be very surprised if we can celebrate new highs this year.
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