Dania Gonzalez, deputy representative of the Republic of El Salvador, was recently in Brazil presenting her country’s experience in deciding to adopt Bitcoin (bitcoin) as legal tender. Gonzalez’s invitation to Brazil came from digital influencer Rodrix Digital, who recently made a documentary about cryptocurrencies in El Salvador.
The lawmaker’s activities in Brazil include attending Bitconf 2022, as well as meeting Dape Capital CEO Daniele Abdo Philippi and Agency ROE CEO Ana Élle.
Between her agendas, Gonzalez spoke with Cointelegraph and revealed how Bitcoin is helping to change the lives of people in El Salvador and how the federal government is being President Nayib Bukelehas been using the resources invested in BTC to improve the economy.
Salvador just bought the dipping sauce!
500 coins with an average USD price of around $30,744 #bitcoin
– Nayib Bukele (@nayibbukele) May 9, 2022
was asked El Salvador’s Investment in Bitcoin And how it affects people’s lives as the value of BTC falls, Gonzalez emphasized that every investment has costs and benefits.
“What Nayib Bukele does is buy bitcoin and take a profit at some strategic moment,” she said. “In cryptocurrencies, sometimes you can make a profit, and sometimes you have to invest more. Now that cryptocurrencies are down, it happens This is the case, it’s normal, but don’t be sad at this point, don’t think you’ve lost all your investment, it’s time to buy more bitcoin because it’s cheap right now, that’s the strategy.”
According to Gonzalez, El Salvador has already benefited from investing in bitcoin; she cited two businesses — a veterinary hospital and a public school — thanks to the cryptocurrency. She explained:
“Bukele built a veterinary hospital for the benefit of people, where services, anything for your pet, cost $0.25. Even surgery costs that much and it’s accessible to all. Bitcoin Has translated into the welfare of the people. Now with the Bitcoin reserves, we have to build 20 more schools. Before Bitcoin, we had to approve the project, put it into the general state budget, and build it with the people’s money. Now the work is done Well, thanks for all the profits made with Bitcoin.”
Gonzalez said Bukele’s strategy has proven successful in terms of socioeconomic impact.
“That’s the main reason the president also buys bitcoin,” she said. “He did it to be able to generate profits for the people’s social projects […] It’s not just words, it’s tangible to people, as they can see part of the public service that is enabled by Bitcoin profits. “
Cointelegraph also discussed with lawmakers Central Bank Digital Currencyalso known as CBDCs, and how countries issuing them could impact the cryptocurrency market.
Gonzalez said she sees no conflict between cryptocurrencies and CBDCs, arguing that the two should coexist in the future to guide countries’ digital ecosystems. Furthermore, she said that countries proposing to issue a CBDC show that they already understand the power of the crypto economy.
The deputy also emphasized that El Salvador is working to expand the impact of the Bitcoin law and will create a cryptocurrency-based ecosystem and eliminate taxes on industries related to the cryptoeconomy.
In addition, she stressed that other laws will be reformulated to meet the new demands of the digital economy and reduce bureaucracy in public administration procedures. She explained:
“We want to be able to do business in El Salvador in 5 minutes […] We already have a national digital wallet system for cryptocurrencies and we intend to create a law so that investors from all over the world can obtain citizenship directly in El Salvador when they invest in the world of Bitcoin in our country. “
Financial Inclusion Conference in El Salvador has central bankers shouting Bitcoin.
On day 3, 44 central bank and financial representatives took part in the country’s iconic El Zonte or “Bitcoin Beach” tour.
— Cointelegraph (@Cointelegraph) May 20, 2022
Bitcoin changes people’s lives
Gonzalez also revealed to Cointelegraph the adoption of Bitcoin as fiat currency Attracts investors and businesses from all over the world and strengthened the independence of merchants and local communities from the banking monopoly.
“It presents an opportunity for independent merchants to have a new payment gateway, because the payment channel can be cash, or it can be a credit or debit card,” she said. “But if you go to the bank and want to apply [point of sales] To accept credit or debit card payments, you’ll be charged a membership fee, up to a 9% commission on each purchase. “
Bitcoin, on the other hand, “is fully decentralized finance, and if you use a national wallet, there are no commissions,” she explained.
Another immediate benefit cited by the deputy was related to remittances from Salvadorans living in other countries, such as the United States. According to Gonzalez, 7 million El Salvadorans live within El Salvador, and about 3 million live outside it, mostly in the United States.
Thanks to bitcoin, sending money from the U.S. can be free, she said. Gonzalez also claimed that Western Union lost about $400 million on its money transfer business last year because of El Salvador’s bitcoin laws.
Bitcoin Beach and Surf City
Gonzalez revealed details about her country’s Bitcoin Beach and Surf City projects, both of which are taking place in the El Zonte area. Among them, Bitcoin is used as a form of social transformation to facilitate crypto payments and economic development through digital assets.
All the central bankers are screaming… pic.twitter.com/MxdOrYD3lc
— Bitcoin Beach (@Bitcoinbeach) May 20, 2022
she explained Bitcoin Beach existed before BTC laws passed. On Bitcoin Beach, “you can buy a soda or ‘Pupusa’, the typical food of El Salvador, on the street, or go to a famous restaurant and you can pay in Bitcoin.”
The deputy also revealed that El Zonte is working on a project called Surf City, which aims to train local communities to take advantage of surf-related tourism, as the beaches have some of the best waves for the sport.
“These communities are now benefiting from job opportunities in businesses or jobs in hotels and restaurants, and now have more potential than before, and more tourists now come to El Salvador because they […] Everything they want can be paid in bitcoin,” she said. “I know companies from Singapore a few months ago that now have about 50 Salvadorans working in their business. This shows how Bitcoin can change the lives of people in El Salvador. “
Additionally, the deputy highlighted how Bitcoin has always benefited the unbanked, who can now access financial services through cryptocurrencies without the bureaucracy of traditional systems:
“Traditional banks exclude 70% of the nation’s population from their services for different reasons. In addition, 30% of the population have access to financial services, only 23% work in banks and 7% through cooperatives Access to financial services. “High interest rates. Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies now benefit this excluded population who now have power and opportunity. “