El Salvador becomes the first country in the world to use Bitcoin as a national currency after Congress passed a bill making Bitcoin a legal tender in the country.
On Tuesday evening, a majority of 62 lawmakers out of a total of 84 in El Salvador’s Congress approved a bill to make bitcoin (BTC) a legal tender in the country. The bill was sent to congress by the country’s president last week.
The Central American country has made history as the first nation around the world to adopt cryptocurrency as a national currency.
And although there are concerns that the move may affect the country’s program with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) where the country is seeking to have $1 billion, the president highlighted that the move would go a long way in ensuring financial inclusivity in the country especially considering that 70% of the population do not have bank accounts.
Bitcoin will be used alongside the US dollar in El Salvador
After 90 days, starting Wednesday, Salvadorans will be able to use bitcoin (BTC) to settle debts, purchase goods, etc. in the country.
Salvadorans living outside the country will also have the option of sending remittances back to their families at home in the form of bitcoins. This will be a game-changer since the country’s economy relies very heavily on remittances sent back home from people living abroad and a lot of money was being lost to intermediaries.
Bitcoin will be used alongside the US Dollar and citizens will have the liberty to choose which of the two to use.
Bukele, the president, said,
“The government will guarantee the convertibility to the exact value in dollars at the moment of each transaction.”