While many worry that El Salvador has regretted adopting Bitcoin as a legal tender, its population has taken the opportunity to use the currency to buy food.
This move to adopt Bitcoin as legal tender in the small Central American country was presented to the world in 2021. Quickly, the president drafted a Bitcoin Law, sent it to the National Congress and in a few months El Salvador would go down in history by being the first country to legalize Bitcoin like this.
This action was certainly the target of international attacks on the local government, accused of putting the population’s finances at risk. In addition, criticisms about Bitcoin’s volatility were addressed to the country, which bought more than 1,000 coins on the market as a store of value.
It is worth remembering that the Dollar is also a local currency, but the central bank does not issue its own currency as in Brazil, where the Real is produced backed by the trust of the local financial system.
According to research, 82% of the population used Bitcoin to buy food
Another common criticism of Bitcoin is that it is not a currency, but a “crypto asset”, having bad characteristics as a medium of exchange for those who do not like the technology.
But in El Salvador, the government gave a Bitcoin balance to the entire population through the country’s official Chivo wallet. Despite the controversies surrounding this tool, those who signed up for the app won their first Bitcoin fractions.
And according to a survey released last Tuesday (18), 82% of people used Bitcoin to buy food. That is, in addition to being a currency, Bitcoin has helped to put more food on the table of local families, showing an important use case in consumption.
After consuming food, 4.7% used Bitcoin to buy fuel, 4.1% for healthcare, 3.2% for entertainment and only 0.6% as an investment. This research was carried out by the Fundaungo Public Opinion Studies Center and published by the Daily El Mundo.
Bitcoin remittances are not yet popular
The adoption of Bitcoin in the country has taken off, and the president has already stated that more Salvadorans have a digital currency wallet than traditional bank accounts.
But the survey indicated that only 6 out of 10 Salvadorans have Chivo installed on their devices. Regarding financial remittances with Bitcoin, only 8.1% of the people interviewed confirmed having used the digital currency for this, a number that was still low in the period reported.
Regarding the use of Bitcoin, six out of 10 (61.4%) Salvadorans stated that they had downloaded the “Chivo Wallet” application. In addition, only 8.1% of the population that receives remittances assures that they have already received them through Bitcoin. pic.twitter.com/k9SrTVpsBG
– Fundaungo (@Fundaungo) January 18, 2022
In any case, Bitcoin continues to be used as a currency in the country where it is already possible to buy even a coffee on the street, while the adoption in El Salvador is just over four months old and is just beginning.