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President Bukele Confirms that El Salvador Will Not Require Bitcoin Acceptance

In a Twitter thread on Monday, El Salvador President Nayib Bukele stated that the use of bitcoin as legal currency would not be mandated.

Bukele stated the government would not compel any of the country's citizens to accept bitcoin as a method of payment, echoing El Salvador's finance minister, Alejandro Zelaya, who said the same thing last week.

“They may continue to carry cash, not get a sign-on incentive, not win over clients who have bitcoin, not expand their company, and pay commission on remittances,” Bukele stated.

Article 7 of the Bitcoin Law states that all economic agents must accept bitcoin as a method of payment when it is provided by the person purchasing goods or services.

“The president has been explicit in stating that the usage of bitcoin is not mandatory,” Ernesto Sanabria, a spokesperson for Bukele.

Sanabria said he had previously addressed the matter in his answer when asked about a potential modification to Article 7. He didn't say if the item will be removed or changed in any way.

El Salvador citizens will be able to accept bitcoin or dollar payments, establish a small company and administer it from there, receive money from family or friends, and send and receive remittances without paying a single penny of commission to anybody, according to Bukele.

“If they so desire.” If they don't, he said, "simply don't download anything and that's it."

If bitcoin is received, it may be converted into US dollars, stored in a digital wallet, or exchanged for cash at one of the country's 200 ATMs, according to Bukele, who also said that "there will be 50 branches to withdraw or deposit money."

Bukele stated that Salvadorans living abroad would be able to transfer money to family members in the nation using bitcoin for remittances. “If you want to send bitcoin, you can send bitcoin, or you can send dollars.”

“You can always go to Western Union and pay a commission if you don't want to. Bukele replied, "No issue at all."

Last Tuesday, Zelaya said that bitcoin and digital wallets would be "completely voluntary" in El Salvador, and that companies who do not accept the cryptocurrency will not be punished.

When asked why it was essential to remove Article 7 from the Bitcoin Law, Zelaya just questioned why and did not elaborate.

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