Bill to make Bitcoin legal tender passes in El Salvador

The President of El Salvador’s bill to make Bitcoin legal tender in El Salvador passed Congress with a supermajority just before 6AM UTC.

In a Twitter Spaces conversation that began just after 5AM UTC with 22,000 listeners President Nayib Bukele said he would sign off on the historic law later tonight or first thing tomorrow.

“It goes into effect immediately,” he said, clarifying the government would allow 90 days for the infrastructure to be put into place.

He said that accepting Bitcoin would be mandatory for all businesses. “They have to take it by law,” he said of merchants in the country. “If you go to Mexico they have to take your pesos.

“In the case of El Salvador Bitcoin is going to be legal tender just as the US Dollar.”

He revealed that he will be meeting with the International Monetary Fund on Thursday. The government will also be releasing an official Bitcoin wallet (however this will not be mandatory). The government intends to hold $150 million equivalent of Bitcoin in a trust fund in its development bank to assume the risks of merchants.

Permanent residency will be available for those who invest 3 BTC in El Salvador. Asked if the country would put Bitcoin in its reserve he said there were no immediate plans:

“I don’t know this is evolving very fast. We’re not ruling out having Bitcoin in our reserves in the near future.”

The President said he hasn’t thought of Bitcoin mining but was favorably disposed towards the idea of renewable energy Bitcoin mining.

The Bitcoin law was a bill submitted earlier today after Bukele tweeted that “I’ve just sent the Bitcoin Law to congress,” and uploaded copies of the bill in Spanish and English.

“The purpose of this law is to…

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