BTC president of El Salvador to grant citizenship for foreign investors

Nayib Bukele steps up efforts to attract outside investment

The president of El Salvador has announced his intention to introduce 52 legal reforms which seek to promote foreign investment in the Central American nation. 

Nayib Bukele

Nayib Bukele rose to international prominence in 2021 by making the El Salvador the first country in the world to recognise bitcoin as legal tender. 

In addition to adding hundreds of bitcoin to the country’s balance sheet, Bukele promoted the world’s first and largest cryptocurrency to El Salvadorans by installing hundreds of bitcoin ATMs and establishing a digital wallet called Chivo for every citizen.

The 40-year-old leader has also outlined plans to build a ‘Bitcoin City’. Funded in part by an upcoming $1bn (£735m) bitcoin bond, the project will be based at the foot of the Conchagua volcano. Bukele hopes to make El Salvador a leading location for bitcoin mining by harnessing geothermal power. 

The president has previously offered favourable tax arrangements to outside investors if they relocate to El Salvador. On Sunday, he took such inducements a step further. 

To his 3.5 million Twitter followers, Bukele stated:

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International pressure

Should El Salvador’s bet on bitcoin prove successful, Bukele’s government could find itself under increased pressure from the international community. 

Last month the International Monetary Fund urged El Salvador to reverse its recognition of bitcoin as legal tender, stressing that the cryptocurrency’s volatility threatened the nation’s financial stability. 

Last week saw the introduction of bipartisan draft legislation in the US Senate entitled the ‘Accountability for Cryptocurrency in El Salvador Act (ACES)’, which would require a state department report on the country’s bitcoin adoption and “a plan to mitigate potential risks to the U.S. financial system”.

In response, Bukele described the US senators as “boomers” and maintained: “You have 0 jurisdiction on a sovereign and independent nation. We are not your colony, your back yard or your front yard. Stay out of our internal affairs. Don’t try to control something you can’t control.”

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