El Salvador becomes first country to make bitcoin legal tender
10 September 2021 | 11:38 am
On 7 September 2021, El Salvador became the first country to embrace bitcoin as legal tender. Consumer demand saw its brand-new cyber wallet system crash on its first day of use as the currency's value seesawed against the US dollar. While thousands of Salvadorans are already using the cryptocurrency for everyday transactions, hundreds have taken to the streets to protest with concerns about the safety and legitimacy of the cyber currency.
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In September 2021, El Salvador became the first nation in the world to make bitcoin its official currency, along with the US dollar. The experiment in the small Central American country was considered groundbreaking by some and too risky by others. Seven months on, our regional correspondents take a look at how it has changed the lives of Salvadorians, for better or for worse.
With the climate crisis beginning to gain some traction in the France presidential campaign, we focus on a clean but little exploited source of power: geothermal energy, which creates electricity from the Earth's heat. Kenya has become a major producer, with its geothermal power plants now providing a third of the country's electricity. Our France 2 colleagues report, with FRANCE 24's Camille Nedelec and Jennie Shin.
Although El Salvador has seen a fall in the number of homicides, the country suffers from another type of crime that the government avoids talking about. Gangs are stepping up kidnappings and forced disappearances, terrorising the most vulnerable, who increasingly end up dead. Faced with the authorities' silence, who keep no official register, victims' loved ones are speaking out. Our regional correspondents Laurence Cuvillier and Matthieu Comin report.
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Central African Republic and El Salvador have made Bitcoin legal tender and Panama has approved a bill to regulate crypto assets. Experts have warned that nations that adopt crypto currencies risk instability.
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