Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele claims that 2.1 million of his fellow citizens are using the government-backed cryptocurrency wallet Chivo, offering a glimpse into the country’s apparent Bitcoin success (BTC) gambit.
The controversial president updated its 2.9 million Twitter followers on Saturday afternoon, stating that Chivo “now has more users than any bank in El Salvador” after only three weeks in operation. Bukele indicated that it is only a matter of time before the adoption of Chivo eclipse all the banks in El Salvador together.
2.1 million Salvadorans ARE ACTIVELY USING @chivowallet (no downloads).
Chivo is not a bank, but in less than 3 weeks, it now has more users than any bank in El Salvador and is moving fast to have more users than ALL BANKS IN EL SALVADOR combined.
This is wild!#Bitcoin
– Nayib Bukele (@nayibbukele) September 25, 2021
The state-issued Chivo wallet was launched in early September as El Salvador officially recognized Bitcoin as legal tender – a historic move that could offer an important case study for other countries in the region. Chivo allows individuals and companies to send and receive payments in Bitcoin or dollars from anywhere in the world. The wallet is available on Android and Apple devices. As Cointelegraph reported, Mexican cryptocurrency exchange Bitso has been registered as the main service provider for Chivo.
Bukele’s latest update suggests that the Bitcoin Law is being received favorably across the country, even as hundreds of anti-government protesters took to the streets to voice their opposition. On September 15, these protests culminated in the burning a crypto kiosk in the nation’s capital city.
Undoubtedly, the massive adoption of Chivo is due in part to the government airdrop $ 30 worth of BTC to all Salvadoran account holders. According to a recent survey by São Paulo-based agency Sherlock Communications, just over half of Salvadorans I am not familiar with Bitcoin.
Meanwhile, the Bukele government has been filling its coffers with BTC following a series of volatile price fluctuations for the digital asset. El Salvador “bought the drop” in at least two recent price drops – September 7th and September 20 – raising their total holdings to 700 BTC.