A recent survey revealed that El Salvador’s decision to adopt Bitcoin(BTC) as legal tender has failed to persuade the country’s citizens to see the crypto’s benefits. Nearly 80% of the Salvadorans who participated in the poll expressed skeptical views of President Nayib Bukele’s push to legalize Bitcoin payments.
Conducted by Francisco Gavidia University's affiliate Disruptiva, the survey polled 1,233 Salvadorans between 1st and 4th July and found that nearly 54% of its participants viewed Bitcoin adoption as “not at all correct”, while another 24% thought that it was “only a little correct.” Only 20% of the people approved of the flagship cryptocurrency as legal tender.
The survey, which had a margin error of 2.8%, also showed that 46% of the respondents had no knowledge about Bitcoin and roughly 65% said that they would not be willing to accept payments in BTC.
While presenting the poll’s results at an event, Oscar Picardo, the head of Disruptiva’s institute of science, technology, and innovation, posited that the move was “a risky bet on digital transformation.”
The Bitcoin legislation was first announced by Bukele amid much fanfare at this year’s Bitcoin Conference in Miami. Shortly after, El Salvador’s Congress passed the proposed legislation with a supermajority on June 9, making it the world’s first country to legalize the primary cryptocurrency. The Bitcoin law will go into effect on September 7, which will make BTC the second currency of El Salvador after the US dollar.
Bukele’s government has undertaken various measures to encourage the adoption of Bitcoin among El Salvador’s citizens. A few weeks back, the president announced a Bitcoin wallet called Chivo that will provide free transfers to its users. He also stated that every user of the wallet will be eligible for a BTC airdrop worth $30.
According to President Bukele, Bitcoin adoption will dramatically reduce the costs incurred while transferring remittances to Salvadorans and lessen the country’s reliance on the US dollar.
The president has also assured his citizens that the country will set up new infrastructure to support its parallel financial system, with special emphasis on internet connectivity. At present, almost 70% of El Salvador’s residents lack access to a financial service or a bank account.