Athena Bitcoin, a Chicago-based U.S. company that operates bitcoin and other cryptocurrency ATMs throughout North and South America, announced its plans to expand its network in El Salvador, the country that recently made bitcoin a legal tender.
The company, which has a large ATM network stretching from Michigan to Puerto Rico in the U.S. as well as terminals in Argentina and Colombia, will make the expansion of their coverage in El Salvador by installing 1,000 ATMs in the coming months.
The country actually has a bitcoin ATM in Playa El Tunco owned by a different operator. Athena Bitcoin operates a nearby terminal on Playa El Zonte and has recently installed another one closer to the capital in a shopping center in Antiguo, Cuscatlán.
El Salvador President wants more
The Chicago-based operator announced their plans on expansion in the country on Twitter and took the liberty to ask El Salvador’s President, Nayib Bukele, if a thousand ATMs will suffice for their needs.
Bukele made his stance on the matter clear, by replying, “1,000? How about 1,500?”
Meanwhile, as far as charges are concerned, the other company operating the terminal imposes a percentage charge for purchasing cryptocurrencies through the ATM. The same is also true for crypto-to-dollar conversion.
Authorities in the country said, however, that the percentage charge was under analysis.
El Salvador deals with resistance
The country’s Congress recently passed a bill that gave bitcoin a legal tender status, with the use of the cryptocurrency set to be enforced within three months.
World Bank said it will not help El Salvador implement the legislation. Moreover, the institution, along with the International Monetary Fund condemned the nation’s decision to legalize the crypto. Both said the move is not without its macroeconomic, financial and legal concerns.
But against the odds, the adoption process has already started and in fact, El Salvador proposed geothermal energy from volcanoes be harnessed to power crypto mining firms.
Image courtesy of Cointelegraph News/YouTube