A growing number of governments have responded to Facebook’s cryptocurrency plans including China, France, India, Japan, South Korea, Russia, Singapore, Thailand, the U.K., and the U.S. Several intergovernmental organizations have also weighed in such as the European Central Bank and the Bank of International Settlements.
Facebook’s Libra Project
Facebook unveiled its plans last month for newly formed subsidiary Calibra which aims to provide financial services via the Libra network. “The first product Calibra will introduce is a digital wallet for Libra, a new global currency powered by blockchain technology. The wallet will be available in Messenger, Whatsapp and as a standalone app — and we expect to launch in 2020,” the social media giant announced. Calibra has been providing information to central banks worldwide regarding its Libra plans to create understanding and exchange information, according to Calibra CEO David Marcus.
Regarding which countries Calibra will be available in, a Facebook spokesperson told news.Bitcoin.com on July 9 that “Calibra won’t be available in U.S.-sanctioned countries or countries that ban cryptocurrencies,” elaborating:
The Libra blockchain will be global. It will be up to custodial wallet providers to determine where they will and will not operate.
Lawmakers in the U.S. have been actively taking initiatives in response to Facebook’s Libra announcement. During his semi-annual testimony on monetary policy before the House of Representatives Financial Services Committee on July 10, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said:
Libra raises many serious concerns regarding privacy, money laundering, consumer protection and financial stability.
He added, “I don’t think the project can go forward” without addressing those concerns,