Nicolas Cary, co-founder and vice chairman of Blockchain.com, today criticized El Salvador’s approach to Bitcoin as legal tender.
“I think there’s some valid criticisms of how the program is rolled out in El Salvador in terms of being top down. One of the main ethos of crypto is that there’s really grassroots adoption, and people are doing it voluntarily,” Cary said during the Token 2049 conference in London.
Cary’s criticism—that Bitcoin adoption compelled by government does not reflect the cryptocurrency’s values—has also been made by Salvadorans who spoke to Decrypt on condition of anonymity.
For President Bukele and his defenders, implementing Bitcoin as legal tender not only makes remittances cheaper for Salvadorans, but it can also end the country's reliance on the U.S. dollar—which is also legal tender in El Salvador.
Bukele’s policy has earned him the admiration of many of Bitcoin’s loudest advocates, including podcaster Peter McCormack, and MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor. But not all Salvadorans share the president’s enthusiasm for Bitcoin.