El Salvador has officially become the first country in the world to accept Bitcoin as a legal tender. The bill was introduced by President, Nayib Bukele, and was passed in the Legislative Assembly with a supermajority.
The bill will go into effect immediately, with the government allowing 90 days for all of the correct infrastructure to be put in place. The new laws make it mandatory for ALL businesses to accept Bitcoin, meaning that no one has the right to refuse Bitcoin for a method of payment.
“In the case of El Salvador, Bitcoin is going to be legal tender just as the U.S. dollar.”
“They have to take it by law,” said President Bukele:
The #BitcoinLaw has been approved by a supermajority in the Salvadoran Congress.
62 out of 84 votes!
— Nayib Bukele (@nayibbukele) June 9, 2021
President Bukele further revealed that he would be meeting with the International Monetary Fund on 10 June 2021. The El Salvador government is set to release a Bitcoin wallet for residents of the country and it also intends to hold $150 million worth of Bitcoin in a trust fund.
For those looking to relocate to El Salvador, following the new Bitcoin laws, permanent residency is available for anyone who invests just 3 BTC in the country.
In terms of the new bill, the state provides the infrastructure that allows Bitcoin users to instantly convert BTC to US Dollars when they need to do so. Furthermore, the state will also provide training for those who are unfamiliar with the digital asset.
Wikipedia has even listed Bitcoin as one of El Salvador’s official currencies:
Wikipedia now lists #Bitcoin as El Salvador's currency. pic.twitter.com/JfbdoeBumB
— Documenting ₿itcoin 📄 (@DocumentingBTC) June 9, 2021
The move by the El Salvador government has further legitimised that Bitcoin is a currency. It will be interesting to see if any other countries choose to follow in El Salvador’s footsteps.