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El Salvador’s Bitcoin Day is overshadowed by operational difficulties when the country’s BTC wallet services go down.
It’s September 7, and El Salvador’s Bitcoin Law has officially gone into effect, three months after the historic vote in the country’s parliament. The Central American country is become the first to accept Bitcoin (BTC) as legal cash.
Tweeting earlier in the day, El Salvador President Nayib Bukele remarked “3 minutos para hacer historia — In 3 minutes, we make history.”
However, day one of El Salvador’s Bitcoin experiment has been somewhat marred by server capacity errors suffered by the state-issued Chivo wallet. Addressing the situation, President Bukele remarked:
“For a few moments it won’t work @chivowallet, we have disconnected it while increasing the capacity of the image capture servers. The installation problems that some people had were for that reason. We prefer to correct it before reconnecting it.”
As previously reported by said, El Salvador has purchased 200 BTC, taking its Bitcoin holdings to 400 “coins.” The country’s parliament recently passed a $150-million Bitcoin fund to facilitate conversions from BTC to United States dollars.
Thus, more bulk Bitcoin purchases are expected, with the president even signaling intentions to ramp up the country’s BTC acquisition.
Since the referendum in June, the Central American country has received a lot of support from the Bitcoin community. Tuesday’s debut is anticipated to be marked with a $30 BTC purchase in solidarity from numerous Bitcoin supporters in Latin America and around the world.
Bitcoin luminaries including MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor and Human Rights Foundation senior strategy officer Alex Gladstein have backed the plan.
According to Konstantin Anissimov, executive director of crypto exchange CEX.IO, El Salvador’s adoption of Bitcoin validates BTC as a currency. According to Anissimov, Bitcoin provides significant financial assistance to countries with weak economies such as El Salvador.
“The big advantage Bitcoin will have for these economies is that they will not have any debt to pay to anyone. It also means that these countries will offer excellent opportunities for the adoption of cryptocurrencies and for crypto startups. This will eventually boost taxation and can become a growth point for this country.”
El Salvador’s Bitcoin adoption drive has been welcomed with both enthusiasm and animosity from both within and beyond the country. Some pensioners protested the Bitcoin Law in August, fearing that the government might pay their pensions in BTC rather than US dollars.
According to reports, up to 70% of the country’s population is opposed to Bitcoin becoming legal tender. The International Monetary Fund and other global financial institutions have also urged El Salvador against introducing Bitcoin as official cash.
Speaking to Bloomberg on Tuesday, Mark Mobius of Mobius Capital Partners panned El Salvador’s Bitcoin adoption plan, stating that the country was “grasping at straws.”