SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador – Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele announced in a recorded message broadcast at a Bitcoin conference in Miami on Saturday that he would send a bill to the country’s congress next week that would make crypto legal tender. currency in the nation of Central America.
The 39-year-old president, who has maintained approval ratings above 90% and made Twitter his favorite medium, called it an idea that could help El Salvador move forward.
“Next week, I will send a bill to Congress that will make Bitcoin legal tender in El Salvador,” Bukele said. “In the short term this will create jobs and help provide financial inclusion to thousands of people outside the formal economy and in the long term we hope this small decision can help us push humanity to the next level. less a tiny bit in the right direction.
Download the NBC News app for the latest news and politics
The US dollar is the official currency of El Salvador. About a quarter of Salvadoran citizens live in the United States and last year, despite the pandemic, they sent home more than $ 6 billion in funds.
Bukele’s New Ideas Party holds a qualified majority in the new congress sitting on May 1, giving any legislative proposal from the president a high probability of adoption.
Additional details of the plan were not disclosed. But Bukele in subsequent Twitter posts noted that Bitcoin could be “the fastest growing medium to transfer $ 6 billion a year in remittances.”
He said that much of those money transfers are currently being lost to middlemen and that with Bitcoin over a million low-income families could benefit.
He also said that 70 percent of the population of El Salvador does not have a bank account and works in the informal economy. Bitcoin could improve financial inclusion, he said.
With his great popularity and his party’s dominant position in the February 28 elections, Bukele concentrated power. His party’s qualified majority in Congress ousted judges from the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court on May 1. They then replaced the Attorney General.
They had criticized some of Bukele’s most drastic measures during the pandemic, including a mandatory stay-at-home order and containment centers where those who broke policy were held.