El Salvador is the first country to make Bitcoin an official currency

El Salvador's President Nayib Bukele is big on crypto

El Salvador is the first country in the world to adopt Bitcoin as an official currency and legal tender, meaning citizens will be able to use the tender to pay their taxes and more.

Labelled as ‘Bitcoin Day’ by El Salvador’s President Nayib Bukele, today (September 7) the country has adopted Bitcoin as an official currency. This means that citizens can now pay their taxes using Bitcoin, and shops can display the price of items in Bitcoin (thanks, The Verge).

Earlier today, President Bukele announced that the country holds a total of 400 Bitcoin after purchasing an additional 200, which 9news notes is worth around $28.25million (£20.4million) at current trading prices.


The move is followed by the launch of Chivo, a digital wallet that will provide users $30 (£21) for signing up. Around 200 Bitcoin-friendly ATMs have also been distributed across El Salvador in an effort to make the currency more accessible.

Back in June, President Bukele shared that “In the short term, it will generate jobs and help include thousands who are outside the formal economy,” and expected the move to “improve the lives and future of millions” (Svt.se).

As many in El Salvador rely on money sent from relatives working abroad, supporters claim that making Bitcoin an official currency makes it easier to send money and avoid otherwise high fees incurred by other transfer methods.

On the other hand, some argue that adopting such a large amount of Bitcoin into the country’s official reserve is a risky move due to the volatile and unpredictable value of the currency, which is often subject to dramatic highs and lows.


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