Developing countries will soon follow the lead of El Salvador and make Bitcoin (BTC) legal tender, BitMEX CEO Alexander Höptner recently predicted.
In a blog post on Wednesday, Heptner expressed his support for El Salvador’s adoption of bitcoin as legal tender in September, and predicted that developing countries would be a “pioneer” in bitcoin adoption:
“I predict that by the end of next year we will have at least five countries that will accept Bitcoin as legal tender. They will all be developing countries.”
According to Heptner, developing countries will transition faster to Bitcoin due to three main factors: the growing need for cheaper and faster international transfers, massive inflation, and political problems.
Heptner said that unlike consumers in more developed countries, people in developing countries suffer more from problems with international payments and inflation.
The Director-General noted that remittances accounted for 23% of El Salvador’s GDP in 2020, and the World Bank estimates that low- and middle-income countries receive about 75% of total global remittances. He added that people around the world are increasingly looking at Bitcoin as a way to counteract hyperinflation, noting the rapid adoption of cryptocurrencies in Turkey among the 19.2% inflation.
Heptner went on to say that El Salvador’s switch to bitcoin would make it easier for other countries to consider similar steps. “But if it is realistic that politics will play a major role in the acceptance of Bitcoin as legal tender, it is also true that any setbacks from these leaders in the implementation phase may harm the overall adoption of cryptocurrencies,” he added.
Related: 70% of Salvadorans oppose the bitcoin law. Implementation approaching September 7th
Former CEO of German Stock Exchange Boerse Stuttgart, Heptner took over as BitMEX CEO in December 2020 and replaced Arthur Hayes.
Heptner isn’t the only one who thinks more countries will follow El Salvador’s lead and switch to bitcoin. Last month, Cardano founder Charles Hoskinson predicted that many countries would accept cryptocurrency. World programmer Edward Snowden also believes that “grandchildren may regret their hesitation.”
Some key figures in the crypto space are reluctant to praise El Salvador’s adoption of the cryptocurrency developed by President Nep Bukele. Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin criticized Bukele’s approach to Bitcoin adoption on Friday, saying that forcing companies to adopt a particular cryptocurrency “goes against the ideals of freedom that should be so important to the crypto area.”