Report: El Salvador Sees Decline in Bitcoin User Base Activity

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  • A survey by El Salvador reveals that while living standards have improved, Bitcoin usage remains limited, with most users making few transactions, primarily for groceries and pet supplies.
  • The survey indicates that most Salvadorans believe their economic situation has remained the same in 2023, with a small percentage attributing improvements to factors other than Bitcoin.
  • The survey reveals a widespread perception of rising costs for basic goods, amidst El Salvador’s continued focus on Bitcoin initiatives.

Survey Shows Increase in Living Standards, Bitcoin Decline

The Universidad Centroamericana “José Simeón Cañas” in El Salvador has released a survey about the country’s current economic situation.

The survey showed that around 85% of respondents did not use Bitcoin to buy or pay for something, with 12% reporting usage within that year. Out of those that used Bitcoin for payments in 2023 around half (49.3%) used it three times or less – only 10.5% said they used BTC more than 10 times during 2023.

Bitcoin was most often used to pay for groceries (22.9%), supermarket purchases (20.9%), and pet supplies (15%).

Source: Instituto Universitario de Opinión Pública

Do Salvadorans Think Their Situation Has Improved?

The survey asked an interesting question regarding the role Bitcoin may have played in people’s economic circumstances.


During the year 2023, considering Bitcoin as a legal tender currency, do you think that the country’s economy has improved, worsened, or stayed the same?


More than half of respondents said they feel things have stayed the same, while 16.3% believe things have improved, and 18.6% believe they have worsened. While the number of people believing in improved conditions has increased, most do not attribute this to Bitcoin.

Only 0.5% who said they thought economic conditions improved thought this was due to Bitcoin. 23.5% attributed the improvements to a reduction in crime rates, and 19.8% cited the government as the main cause.

Overall Survey Results

The survey also showed that approximately 53 out of every 100 Salvadorans affirmed having stopped buying some food items due to price increases. A quarter of the Salvadoran population maintains that their economic situation has worsened at the close of the year 2023.

More than half of the Salvadoran population considers that the migration of Salvadorans to foreign countries increased during 2023. For 90 out of every 100 Salvadorans, the prices of basic basket products increased during the year 2023.

El Salvador was the first country to make Bitcoin legal tender in 2021. In Late 2023 it announced that its digital assets commission had approved Bitcoin bonds, which are said to start trading this quarter.

Aaron Feuerstein

Aaron Feuerstein

Aaron Feuerstein is a freelance writer based in Melbourne. His focus is on decentralised finance and the regulatory space surrounding blockchain. He holds a Master's in Accounting. When he is not studying the latest legal case, he enjoys his time as a modest but eager hobby cook.

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