Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele claims that 2.1 million of his fellow citizens use the government-backed Chivo cryptocurrency wallet, which gives a glimpse into the obvious success of the country’s Bitcoin (BTC) gambit.
The controversial president Updated its 2.9 million Twitter followers on Saturday afternoon, claiming that after just three weeks of operation, Chivo “now has more users than any bank in El Salvador”. Bukele pointed out that it is only a matter of time before the introduction of Chivo dwarfs all banks in El Salvador put together.
2.1 million Salvadorans ACTIVELY USE @chivowallet (no downloads).
Chivo is not a bank but in less than 3 weeks it now has more users than any other bank in El Salvador and is moving fast to have more users than ALL BANKS IN EL SALVADOR put together.
This is wild!#Bitcoin
– Nayib Bukele (@nayibbukele) September 25, 2021
The government-issued Chivo wallet was launched in early September when El Salvador officially recognized Bitcoin as legal tender – a landmark move that could provide an important case study for other countries in the region. Chivo enables individuals and businesses to send and receive payments in Bitcoin or Dollars from anywhere in the world. The wallet is available on both Android and Apple devices. As Cointelegraph reported, the Mexican cryptocurrency exchange Bitso has registered as a core service provider for Chivo.
Related: El Salvador’s creditworthiness could take a hit from the introduction of Bitcoin, warns S&P Global
Bukele’s latest update suggests the Bitcoin law will be well received 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 of a crypto kiosk in the country’s capital.
Certainly, Chivo’s mass adoption was in part due to the government dumping $ 30 worth of BTC to each Salvadoran account holder. According to a recent survey by the São Paulo-based agency Sherlock Communications, just over half of Salvadorans do not know Bitcoin.
Meanwhile, the Bukele government has been filling their coffers with BTC after a series of volatile price swings for the digital asset. El Salvador “bought the dip” on at least two recent price drops – September 7th and September 20th – bringing its total holdings to 700 BTC.