Following Facebook’s June announcement of plans to create a digital currency known as Libra, the company’s recent investor report has engendered a bit of pessimism about the potential new global coin. The report referenced the firm’s lack of experience in the blockchain field as well as “scrutiny from governments.”
Concerns and a Possible Delay
Facebook’s announcement attracted enormous attention, but not all of it was positive. Several well-known public figures have appeared to raise concerns about Libra and the potential harm it may cause, and a knock-off website was even launched purporting to sell Libra coins (which are, in truth, far from being released).
Some of those names include U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, European Central Bank Executive Board Member Benoit Coeure, and French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire.
Alluding to its lack of industry experience, Facebook stated in its quarterly report that Libra and Calibra could be delayed or even not launched at all.
“In addition, market acceptance of such currency is subject to significant uncertainty. As such, there can be no assurance that Libra or our associated products and services will be made available in a timely manner, or at all. We do not have significant prior experience with digital currency or blockchain technology, which may adversely affect our ability to successfully develop and market these products and services.”
The CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, stated that the company would take as much time as it needed to improve on all fronts and to “address regulators and different experts and constituents’ questions about this and then figure out what the best way to move forward is”.
Facebook’s digital currency is currently set to launch in 2020. David Marcus is spearheading the development of the project and testified at a congressional hearing earlier this month. In describing the currency’s mission, he explained that Libra and the digital wallet Calibra could be a more effective and low-cost way of transferring money from one person to another.
Some questions have been raised about Libra’s potential, and it has even been referred to as a PayPal upgrade.