The World Bank rejected a request from El Salvador for assistance in its bid to adopt bitcoin as a currency, a spokesperson for the Washington-based development lender said.
El Salvador uses the US dollar as its official currency, but its legislature approved a measure on June 9 that will allow the volatile cryptocurrency to be used for all transactions starting in September, becoming the first nation to do so.
In an email, a World Bank official noted, “While the government did approach us for assistance on bitcoin, this is not something the World Bank can support given the environmental and transparency shortcomings. We are committed to helping El Salvador in numerous ways including for currency transparency and regulatory processes.”
El Salvador’s Finance Minister Alejandro Zelaya said that the country’s President had requested “technical help” from the World Bank to implement and regulate the use of the virtual currency.