El Salvador’s Economy Will Test Bukele 2.0

By Will Freeman

Bukele needs an IMF assistance program to regain access to international markets. Bitcoin and the erosion of the rule of law are stumbling blocks.

SAN SALVADOR – Walking around this capital days before the Feb. 5 elections, I was struck by how many people shared different versions of the same story: Nayib Bukele had changed their lives by dismantling El Salvador’s once-powerful gangs, and they had no doubt they would vote for him (many, for a second time). Still, one task was pending: Bukele has yet to transform the economy. For now, pocketbook issues don’t seem to have taken much of a bite out of Bukele’s massive support. He won a second term (barred by the constitution but greenlit by the Supreme Court) with nearly 83% of...

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