Bitcoin Becomes Official Currency in El Salvador, Remains Illegal in Nigeria

Bitcoin Becomes Official Currency in El Salvador, Remains Illegal in Nigeria

- Central American country, El Salvador, said bitcoin can now be accepted for goods and services by businesses operating within its territory

- This is the second time El Salvador will be reviewing its official currency, after making the US dollar its legal tender, replacing Salvadoran colony

- El Salvador central bank said the adoption of bitcoin won't pose risk to companies financial strength as each transaction will carry exact dollar value as at time of trade

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El Salvador has become the first country to make bitcoin a legal tender, days after the country's President Nayib Bukele announced that the cryptocurrency will become an integral part of the nation's payment system.

The country's lawmaker made bitcoin its legal tender, and will be used for payment just as the citizens utilise dollar. This means every businesses in El Salvador must accept the crypto for exchange of goods and services.

Despite the volatility associated with the digital coin, the country's central bank said it will be zero risks to businesses as the exact dollar rate when the transaction was made will be attached during conversation.

Bukele is betting on the cryptocurrency to boost the country's remittance and solve its currency instability. The Central American country has been heavily dependent on the dollar for twenty years now.

Bitcoin Becomes Official Currency in El Salvador, Remains Illegal in Nigeria
Bitcoin is now an official legal currency in El Salvador. Photo: Mustafa Murat Kaynak/Anadolu Agency
Source: Getty Images

El Salvador had changed its currency from Salvadoran colon to the greenback in 2001 - three months from now, it will review its official currency again and integrate bitcoin into its financial system.

El Salvador is a dollarised country with 6.5 million citizens. It doesn't have control or authority over supply of currency or interest rates since it adopted dollar as official tender - it ceded authority to the US Federal Reserve.

In Nigeria, the cryptocurrency is still illegal in the country, although the central bank governor, Godwin Emefiele, has stated that digital currency will still be allowed in the country.

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies can't be used as payment for goods and services. Emefiele has also warned against trading in them, stating that cryptos are used for funding criminal activities.

Meanwhile, had reported that all the network providers lost over 3.70 million subscribers in April as customers continue to search for cheaper call rates.

Globacom and MTN Nigeria were the biggest losers during the period as they both lost over 3.40 million, while 9mobile and Airtel followed on the chart.

The industry didn't have a good outing in April, and has been losing subscribers for the past six months.


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