Cryptocurrencies: Uruguay in El Salvador’s Footsteps?
Last June, El Salvador became the first country in the world to adopt Bitcoin (BTC) as legal tender. Since then, many rumors have circulated about the countries which could follow the Salvadorian example. Would Uruguay be officially next? If we are not there yet, a Uruguayan senator, Juan Sartori, wishes in any case to allow the inhabitants of the country to be able to freely use cryptocurrencies as a means of payment. A bill was presented to this effect on Tuesday, August 3, confirmed by a tweet from the senator the same day.
Las criptomonedas son una oportunidad para crear inversión y trabajo. Hoy presentamos un proyecto de ley, pionero en el mundo, that busca establecer un uso legítimo, legal y seguro en los negocios vinculados con la producción y comercialización de monedas virtuales in Uruguay.
– Juan Sartori (@JuanSartoriUY) August 3, 2021
What does the bill in question contain?
When we look at the bill in detail, its article 5 states that:
“Crypto-assets will be legally recognized and can be accepted in any trade. They will be considered a valid payment method […], as long as they are in conformity with the provisions of this law and the standards in force. “
Referring to the fact that cryptocurrencies are an opportunity to create investment and employment, Juan Sartori wishes that BTC and altcoins can be accepted as a means of payment by traders.
More generally, this bill aims to provide legal, financial and fiscal security to the sector of production and marketing of crypto-assets. In contrast, Juan Sartori’s bill does not initially provide for making BTC or any other cryptocurrency a legal tender.
If the bill is passed, the government could issue a first license allowing companies to trade crypto-assets on exchange platforms. A second license would make it possible to store these same digital assets. Finally, a third license would be used to create crypto-assets and utility tokens with financial characteristics. Only companies in compliance with anti-money laundering regulations could be issued these licenses.
Regarding mining, the bill provides that miners will need a permit from the Ministry of Industry, Energy and Mining in order to be able to carry out their activity in accordance with the law.
Latin America, a privileged welcome land for cryptocurrencies
While El Salvador is to date the only country to have adopted BTC as legal tender, the majority of rumors and real bills in favor of digital assets concern almost exclusively Latin America. When one knows the socio-economic context of this region, it is not a surprise.
Since the crisis of the late 1990s, some countries have seen the price of their national currencies collapse. Some of these historically devalued national currencies even disappeared and were replaced by the US dollar. This is the case in Ecuador and … in El Salvador.
If the Uruguayan peso is not at the level of the Salvadoran colonist before its disappearance, it remains very volatile and the US dollar is widely used in Uruguay. Cryptocurrencies would notably make it possible to partially remedy this American dependence.
👉 To read – Why will crypto-assets revolutionize our societies of tomorrow?
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About the author: Benjamin Allouch
Lawyer specializing in digital law and personal data. He quickly became interested in bitcoin and blockchain technology, and founded the blog bitcoin-blockchain.fr. He is interested in the emergence of blockchain law and the legal consequences of this technology.
All articles by Benjamin Allouch.