In an unexpected turn of events, El Salvador has announced its upcoming plans to make cryptocurrency legal tender with its borders.

Since 2001, the Central American nation of El Salvador has relied on the United States Dollar as its official currency, however, 20 years on, USD is to share the Salvadorean stage with Bitcoin — a highly unusual move considering the currency’s extreme volatility.

El Salvador’s Congress approved President Nayib Bukele's proposal to begin accepting the cryptocurrency as legal tender, with a majority of 62 out of 84 votes in early June.

This legally binding congressional vote means that El Salvador will be the first nation in the world to fully embrace a cryptocurrency as legal tender.

Once rolled out, this move will legally require any and all traders to accept bitcoin payments at the point of sale, with the only option to refuse being a lack of the technology required to process a digital payment.

"It will bring financial inclusion, investment, tourism, innovation and economic development for our country," President Bukele tweeted on the day of the vote.

Beyond this, Bukele has claimed that this move will allow the whopping 70% of Salvadoreans who currently lack access to financial services to join with the 30% who do.

Despite these broad claims, sceptics abound, with many speaking out regarding the currency’s unreliability due to fluctuating valuations, as well its very uncertain future.

Rather than wholesale adoption of existing cryptocurrencies, other nations are now eyeing the possibility of creating their very own digital currencies, with China having already conducted test-runs of its Digital Yuan in 2020.