El Salvador Becomes First Country To Adopt Bitcoin As Legal Tender
Author Avatar
(Image: Bloomberg/Camilo Freedman)

In a historic move, the Republic of El Salvador has become the first country in the world to adopt cryptocurrency Bitcoin as a legal tender (currency). Lawmakers in the Central American nation’s Congress voted heavily in favour of the Bitcoin Law, securing 62 out of 84 votes.

With this new law passed, businesses in El Salvador will soon be able to trade in Bitcoin – just as they normally would with fiat money – and tax contributions can also be paid with said cryptocurrency. On top of that, exchanges in Bitcoin will not be subjected to capital gains tax as it is no longer considered a form of investment.

“The purpose of this law is to regulate Bitcoin as unrestricted legal tender with liberating power, unlimited in any transaction, and to any title that public or private natural or legal persons require carrying,” stated the new law. It added that the El Salvador government will also promote necessary training and mechanisms to enable Bitcoin transactions among the citizens. This effort is likely to be carried out in collaboration with Strike, a digital wallet company that recently signed a partnership with the nation to equip its financial infrastructure with Bitcoin technology.

The president of El Salvador, Nayib Bukele – who submitted the Bitcoin Law to the country’s Congress for voting earlier today – further emphasised that this latest update will bring financial inclusion, investment, tourism, innovation, and economic development for the country. “The government will guarantee the convertibility to the exact value in dollars at the moment of each transaction,” Bukele said.

For context, El Salvador currently uses US dollar as its sole legal tender, and its economy is highly reliant on the remittances from Salvadorans who work overseas; their earnings is almost comparable to 22% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) – one of the highest ratios globally. In fact, official reports indicated that remittances to the country in 2020 came up to a total of US$5.9 billion. With Bitcoin now approved as a legal currency, those working abroad will be able to conveniently send money back home without having to rely on intermediaries.

Additionally, it is estimated that about 70% of the El Salvador population are unable to access traditional financial services. The introduction of Bitcoin as a legal tender is also expected to help increase financial inclusion.

Many Bitcoin enthusiasts around the world have lauded this as a major step forward for cryptocurrency, but Bitcoin – like all other digital currencies – is notorious for its volatility. Just last month, it took several hits which saw its value gradually decline after rising to a meteoric high of above US$63,000 in April. This may dampen the general public’s acceptance of the digital currency in El Salvador.

El Salvador’s use of Bitcoin use as a legal tender is expected to go into law in 90 days.

(Sources: CNBC, Economic Times, Channel News Asia)

0 0 votes
Article Rating


Comments (0)

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Top Investment Articles
Post Image
Discover Futures as An Investment Option
Sharon Bentley
- 2nd July 2021
In general, the importance of investing cannot be overemphasised, especially in preparation for long-term financial goals. Some popular […]
Post Image
4 Reasons Why You Should Start Learning To Invest In The Global Markets
The RinggitPlus Team
- 19th May 2021
In the past, global investing has not always been something that seemed readily accessible to Malaysians. Expensive transaction […]
Post Image
Historical EPF Dividend Rates
The RinggitPlus Team
- 3rd March 2021
Ever wondered how this year's EPF dividend rate compares to previous years? We got you covered with our historical 11-year chart!
Post Image
MIDF Launches MIDF Invest, Digital Investment Platform For US Stocks And ETFs
Alex Cheong
- 6th July 2021
MIDF Amanah Investment Bank Bhd has launched its new MIDF Invest app, an online investment platform that allows […]

Related articles

Related Posts Image
Related Posts Image
Related Posts Image
Related Posts Image