Published: Fri, October 04, 2019
Economy | By

Key financial partners wary of Facebook's digital currency

Key financial partners wary of Facebook's digital currency

The Wall Street Journal reported that some Visa, MasterCard and other major financial companies may reconsider their participation in Libra. Policy executives from Libra's more than two dozen backers - a group called the Libra Association - have been summoned to a meeting in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, according to people familiar with the matter.

The move to get Libra members to formally sign on is the latest indication Facebook and its partners are pushing forward with the controversial plan, even after the Menlo Park, Calif. -based social media giant came under fire from policymakers around the world. They should review a charter for the Libra Association and appoint a board of directors.

Despite the fact that signing the updated paperwork won't commit the prospective Libra Association members to pay the $10 million Libra project investment, it is reportedly still being met with hesitation.

The Association is meant to help both the members, as they have access to the Library network and will be one of the first in this potentially groundbreaking financial advancement, but it is also meant to benefit Facebook and Libra.

Also notable is the lack of public support from Facebook's Libra partners. Marcus said that he was unaware of any current Libra partners who might abstain from officially joining the organization, but that building a new global currency is "hard and requires courage".

Reuters reported last week that Facebook could push back the launch of Libra to tackle regulatory concerns that have been raised around the world.

Dante Disparte, a member of the Libra Association, has said the organization is committed to protecting people's data.

So far, this has mostly been left to Head of Calibra (which is a wallet for Libra) David Marcus - and sure enough, he commented on WSJ's story on Twitter shortly after it was published.

Libra has since the announcement in June this year, Libra has faced a backlash from regulators both in Europe and the United States. Now, privacy experts have expressed "surprise and concern" over the lack of information Facebook has brought forth to explain how Libra would keep users safe. It draws on big names in the payments, technology, telecommunications and blockchain industries, including eBay, Uber Technologies, blockchain startups Coinbase and Xapo, and Vodafone Group, as well as venture capital companies and non-profit organisations.

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