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El Salvador Establishes National Bitcoin Office

UTC by Babafemi Adebajo · 2 min read
El Salvador Establishes National Bitcoin Office
Photo: Nayib Bukele / Facebook

ONBTC has created a Twitter account and has also stated that it will publish its first report on Bitcoin mining in EL Salvador.

The government of El Salvador has announced the establishment of the first National Bitcoin Office to coordinate local efforts related to the digital asset. The announcement comes after President Bukele stated he will purchase a single Bitcoin daily until further notice.

What Will the National Bitcoin Office Do?

According to a report published by Torres Legal, the National Bitcoin Office will “design, diagnose, plan, program, coordinate, follow up, measure, analyze and evaluate plans, programs, and projects related to Bitcoin.”

The office will report directly to the Presidency since its functional and technical autonomy are within the Presidency. Also, the President reserves the right to appoint the Director of the office. The office can also partner with other country and their organizations in all matters that affect Bitcoin.

Reportedly, Bitcoin advocate, Stacy Herbert, will be involved in setting up the office, a position she tweeted she was honored to be involved with.

Since the announcement, ONBTC has created a Twitter account @bitcoinofficesv. It has also stated that it will publish its first report on Bitcoin mining in EL Salvador.

Further Plans Around Bitcoin Despite Challenges

President Bukele announced plans to build a Bitcoin City near Conchagua volcano earlier. The city would leverage geothermal energy from the volcano to power bitcoin mining. It would also offer significant tax relief for companies in the area. In March, the country also announced a potential $1 billion Bitcoin bond.

Both plans are on hold even as the country tries to weather its way through unfavorable market conditions and a debt storm. Sources cite an unrealized paper loss of about $60 million given the loss in value since El Salvador first started its Bitcoin experiment in September 2021.

Likewise, previous plans have failed to take off as expected. According to a report by the US National Bureau of Economic Research, of 1800 households surveyed, only 20% continued to use the Chivo Wallet after spending the $30 bonus given by the government for downloading the wallet.

Also, data shows that only 1.6% of remittances were sent to El Salvador with digital wallets, though making Bitcoin a legal tender was meant to ease remittances to the country. Also, El Salvador’s relationship with the IMF has soured, making it harder to obtain a much-needed loan.

However you look at it, there’s a lot at stake for president Bukele who is betting all on the success of the Bitcoin initiatives.

Bitcoin News, Blockchain News, Cryptocurrency News, News
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