Controversial Salvadorian president Nayib Bukele has taken a swipe at the Bank of England and mocked the plummeting price of the pound, less than a year after the institution questioned El Salvador’s adoption of bitcoin as legal tender.
Earlier this week, Bukele simply tweeted “Told you so,” a follow-up to an earlier message from November 2021 in which he said he was concerned about the Bank of England “printing money out of thin air.”
This original message was itself a response to comments from Bank of England chief, Andrew Bailey, who said he was concerned about El Salvador’s bitcoin adoption because users might not be prepared for just how volatile its price could be.
“It concerns me that a country would choose it as its national currency,” Bailey said. “What would worry me most of all is, do the citizens of El Salvador understand the nature and volatility of the currency they have.
He added, “There is a strong case for digital currencies, but in our view it has to be stable, particularly if it’s being used for payments. That is not true for crypto assets.”
However, it appears, for the moment at least, that Bukele is having the last laugh as it’s the UK’s currency that’s currently tanking, falling to historic lows in the wake of prime minister Liz Truss’s sweeping tax cuts.
Bukele’s bitcoin experiment hasn’t been a massive success
Despite Bukele reveling in Bank of England’s woes, there’s still a lot of work for him to do to prove once and for all that his bitcoin experiment has been the success he claims.
When he announced his ambitious plans, he claimed that making bitcoin legal tender would attract investment, create jobs, and “push humanity at least a tiny bit into the right direction.”
There was even talk about creating a “Bitcoin City” using $1 billion in government bonds.
However, a national survey from earlier this year showed that just 20% of El Salvador’s population was using the much-hyped Chivo wallet to make bitcoin payments and around the same percentage of businesses were accepting crypto payments.
Not to mention, despite Bukele’s boasting about “buying the dip,” it’s estimated that coins he spent more than $100 million on are now worth around half that figure.