The recent election of Javier Milei as Argentina’s president has sent ripples of optimism through the Bitcoin community and triggered a boost in BTC’s price.
Milei, a far-right libertarian known for his radical economic views, has been a vocal proponent of Bitcoin, igniting hopes for a more crypto-friendly regime in a country plagued by financial instability.
Following Milei’s victory, Bitcoin’s value in Argentina rose, closely approaching all-time highs against the Argentine peso.
The cryptocurrency jumped 2% to 13.2 million Argentine pesos before stabilizing, as per CoinGecko data.
This surge did not surpass the record high of 13.37 million Argentine pesos set on November 16, coinciding with Milei’s rising favorability. Still, it nonetheless signifies growing confidence in digital currencies amidst Argentina’s economic turmoil.
Global markets celebrate President Javier Milei's victory in Argentina.
This is the Bitcoin Reformation, we are living it!
Lots of headwinds coming, yes, but look at the wheels of history: they squeak, they turn, and they are heralding a new epoch. pic.twitter.com/cuVpSHDUjb
— Tuur Demeester (@TuurDemeester) November 19, 2023
Bitcoin as a Doorway of Economic Reform
Milei’s stance on Bitcoin aligns with his broader critique of Argentina’s central banking system, which he blames for rampant inflation.
“The first thing we have to understand is that the central bank is a scam. It is a mechanism by which politicians cheat good people with an inflationary tax,” Milei said.
Milei’s bitcoin views come down to a return of money to its “original creator — the private sector,” a natural counter to government-controlled fiat currencies.
“With legal tender, they scam you with the inflationary tax… #Bitcoin is the natural reaction against central bank scammers; to make money private again.” – Javier Milei, President of Argentina 🇦🇷🇦🇷pic.twitter.com/Rs2yXFo4e7
— Dylan LeClair 🟠 (@DylanLeClair_) November 19, 2023
However, unlike El Salvador’s President Nayib Bukele, Milei does not advocate for Argentina adopting Bitcoin as a legal tender but rather supports a broader economic overhaul, including dollarization and the dissolution of Argentina’s central bank.
Milei’s proposed policies are seen as drastic, especially his plan to replace the peso with the US dollar and “blow up” the central bank.
These changes may impact the use and perception of Bitcoin in Argentina, primarily as an investment tool and inflation hedge.
If Milei’s dollarization strategy succeeds, Argentines’ reliance on cryptocurrencies might decrease as access to foreign currencies becomes easier.
This potential shift raises questions about the future role of digital assets in Argentina’s economy.
Bitcoin’s Role in a Milei-led Argentina
While Milei has previously expressed interest in various cryptocurrencies and digital asset platforms, his commitment to implementing Bitcoin-centric policies remains unclear.
Despite his pro-Bitcoin reputation, skeptics note that Milei has not prioritized innovative Bitcoin policies or shown interest in granting it legal tender status, unlike Bukele in El Salvador.
Milei’s election victory, with almost 56% of the vote, signals a dramatic shift in Argentina’s political landscape.
His promises of radical change, including the privatization of state enterprises and slashing government spending, reflect a clear break from traditional policies.
However, Milei’s capacity to implement his ambitious agenda may be limited by his party’s minority status in Congress, necessitating negotiations with the political establishment he criticized.
Javier Milei’s ascent to the presidency has undoubtedly sparked interest and hope among Argentinian Bitcoin enthusiasts and could herald a new era for cryptocurrencies in Argentina if his economic reforms significantly alter the climate.
While his victory has temporarily boosted Bitcoin’s value, the long-term impact of his policies on the crypto market remains to be seen.
However, the complexity of Argentina’s economic challenges and the uncertainty surrounding Milei’s policy implementation means the future role of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in the country’s economy is still an open question.
As Argentina embarks on this new political journey, the world watches to see how this radical shift will shape the nation’s economic fortunes.