Libra to ‘launch in January’

Facebook’s Libra stablecoin cryptocurrency is set to launch as early as January, according to the Financial Times, who cited three unidentified people involved in the launch.

Since the project’s announcement in 2019, it has sparked regulatory and political backlash from governments and central banks, and as a result the official launch of the stablecoin will represent an even more scaled back version of the project’s wider ambitions for payments, which were already watered down earlier this year.

Earlier this year leaders of the G7 group of nations said they would oppose the launch of Facebook’s Libra stablecoin until it is properly regulated.

The Libra Association plans to launch a single digital coin backed by the dollar said the FT, citing one of the unidentified project members.

Facebook is not the only organisation moving towards launching a digital currency.

Earlier this year Fabio Panetta, member of the executive board of the European Central Bank (ECB), said that with a drive towards digitisation amongst BigTech companies such as Facebook, central banks around the world are questioning whether they should issue a digital currency.

“Whether or not we need a digital Euro is a fundamental and pressing question, and the ECB and the national central banks of the Euro area are considering it together,” said Panetta.

He also warned that developing a digital currency would pose challenges around people’s individual rights, including privacy.

National Technology News has reached out to The Libra Association for comment.

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