Bitfinex Awarded First-Ever Digital Asset Service Provider License In El Salvador

El Salvador, the world’s first nation-state to establish bitcoin as legal tender, has issued a digital assets license to crypto exchange Bitfinex. This marks a landmark achievement for Bitfinex as it has essentially become the first crypto firm to secure El Salvador’s license to operate its regulated trading platform in the tiny Central American country.

Big Win For Bitfinex

Bitfinex has expanded in a major way in El Salvador.

Bitfinex has acquired a digital asset license to operate a regulated trading platform in El Salvador. In an April 11 statement, Bitfinex CTO Paolo Ardoino noted that the company is the world’s first global cryptocurrency platform to receive this license under the new legal framework approved by the Latin American nation.

“We are delighted to be the first company to be awarded this license. It will enable Bitfinex Securities to facilitate the issuance and secondary trading of assets with clearly defined rights and obligations as outlined in the new digital asset regulatory regime,” he posited.   

At the start of 2023, the Legislative Assembly of El Salvador passed landmark legislation that regulates digital securities and provides the legal framework for Bitcoin-backed bonds. According to Jesse Knutson, Head of Operations at Bitfinex Securities, tokenized shares and yield-bearing assets are among the products that the new law will allow to be launched.

El Salvador and its president are known for being bitcoin-friendly. President Nayib Bukele — who became El Salvador’s leader in 2019 — made bitcoin legal tender in the country back in September 2021. He has also purchased around 2,546 bitcoin using public funds — a move that has earned him heavy criticism from the likes of the World Bank, IMF, and most recently a Salvadoran economist who believes Bukele’s massive BTC investment had produced no benefit for the country and should be distributed to the poorest households. 

El Salvador is set to open a second Bitcoin Embassy in Texas, after debuting a similar office in Switzerland’s southern city of Lugano in October of 2022.

It will come as no surprise when the nation issues digital asset licenses to more digital asset platforms in the near future.

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