Suriname Presidential Candidate Wants El Salvador-style Bitcoin Adoption

A Suriname Presidential hopeful says she wants to follow El Salvador’s Bitcoin (BTC) lead, and will grant the token legal tender status if she is elected.

The candidate, Maya Parbhoe, said her goal is to replace the Surinamese dollar with Bitcoin. And she said that El Salvador’s example provided “hope” for the “future.”

Candidate Wants Suriname Bitcoin Haven

El Salvador remains the only nation that has granted Bitcoin legal tender status. But while some governments have spoken about the possibility of following suit, they have yet to do so.

In recent weeks, Argentinian government officials have discussed BTC adoption-related matters with their Salvadoran counterparts.

But Parbhoe, speaking in an interview with Bitcoin Beach’s Mike Peterson, said that El Salvador and its President Nayib Bukele were showing that it is possible to “fight against global powers.” She said:

“Bukele was really able to fight global powers and do what was best for his country by adopting BTC as legal tender. […] I look at El Salvador and I see hope [for the] future.”

The Bitcoin Beach project centers around BTC adoption in the Salvadoran village of El Zonte.

Many think its US expat masterminds provided the blueprint for Bukele’s BTC adoption move.

Parbhoe is hoping to win office in Suriname’s 2025 elections. She has claimed that her goal is to “replace the Surinamese dollar (SRD)” with Bitcoin.

And, like Argentina’s President Javier Milei in the run-up to his election, she says she wants to “simply eliminate” the SRD.

Ditch Fiat for BTC, Urges Presidential Hopeful

However, while Milei’s plans centered on dollarizing the Argentinian economy, Parbhoe wants to ditch fiat for BTC.

She said there was “no reason why” Suriname “cannot replace the SRD with BTC.” Parbhoe explained that adopting BTC would be “the way to build a new system” in the country.

El Salvador officially adopted BTC as legal tender in September 2021, shortly after Bukele announced his plans to do so.

Parbhoe said that “decades of poor financial management” had shown Suriname “many examples of what not to do” with the economy.

The nation’s public spending has ballooned, along with fiscal deficit versus GDP. Corruption is also rife.

Like Argentina, Suriname has also been blighted by soaring inflation in recent years.

Suriname and Bitcoin: El Salvador Parallels?

Parbhoe drew parallels with El Salvador. Both Latin American nations are relatively small, and only 3,766km separates them. She said that Suriname has a “small population of only 600,000” people.

She claimed that she planned to “diversify the economy using innovation” and “position the country as a global leader in technology.”

On X, she claims that her mission is to “color the world orange,” referring to the unofficial color of Bitcoin.

She has also stated that the conditions for Bitcoin adoption in her nation are “perfect,” pointing to a high level of IT literacy and connectivity.

Suriname on a map of South America.
Suriname on a map of South America. (Source: TUBS [CC BY-SA 3.0])
As well as adopting BTC as legal tender, Bukele’s government has been buying BTC with state funds.

The Bukele government has bought at least BTC 5,000. Bukele says that the government is currently storing these funds in cold wallets in a “physical vault” on Salvadoran “territory.”

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