Facebook Revamps Libra Under Pressure

Facebook is reportedly considering changing the makeup of its proposed Libra currency so it will accept a variety of coins, including those of central banks around the world that have voiced opposition to the project and even started working on coins of their own, according to a report by Bloomberg.

The coin was meant to be a single worldwide digital currency, made especially for the 1.7 million unbanked people around the world, allowing them to send money anywhere at little or zero cost to them.

Many central banks and countries around the world opposed the idea as Facebook traveled it around and promoted it. Some said they didn’t trust Facebook’s ability to oversee a currency when it had run into so many issues managing its own data. Other concerns included that the currency could be used for illicit purposes, like money laundering.

The new slant would mean that Libra would become a sort of payments network, and it would be able to include coins issued by other currencies or countries. There’s apparently a plan to reintroduce Libra with the changes.

David Marcus, Facebook executive and Libra co-founder, recently said the network wouldn’t preclude projects by central banks.

“I want to really make that distinction between the network and the assets that are running on top of the network, which I think could be issued by many different entities whether it’s central banks or the private sector,” Marcus said, about how it would potentially host several different coins.

Jennifer Campbell is the founder of Tagomi, one of the Libra Association’s newest members. She said the coin is part of the strategy, but being a payments network comes first.

“We think there’s a lot of momentum building,” she said. Libra “is definitely first and foremost a payment system. Within that there’s definitely also a coin that’s part of that strategy. But it’s first and foremost a payment network.”



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