Following on from its close European neighbors, Germany has officially jumped onto the anti-Libra bandwagon after it approved a blockchain strategy that aims to prevent stablecoins from becoming alternative currencies and threatening state sovereignty.
Just last week, France’s Finance Minister Bruno Le Marie said that they “cannot authorize the development of Libra on European soil.” Well, he has picked up an unlikely ally in Germany.
On Wednesday, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s cabinet passed the strategy that looks purpose-built to mitigate the risks posed by the forthcoming Libra cryptocurrency from Facebook.
“We want to be at the forefront and further strengthen Germany as a leading technology location,” Finance Minister Olaf Scholz said, going on to praise blockchain technology and calling it part of the future Internet.
However, Scholz added: “At the same time, we must protect consumers and state sovereignty. A core element of state sovereignty is the issuing of a currency, we will not leave this task to private companies,” in a thinly veiled stab at Facebook.
More similarities between France and Germany in the quest for digitization on their own terms were also illuminated when it was reported the German government also aims to propose legislation this year which would allow the introduction of blockchain-based electronic bonds.
There appears to be a growing movement towards the issuing of blockchain-based tokens by certain entities. However, when that entity is a private company, like Facebook, there is a much more significant backlash.
France has also mentioned the idea of issuing a “Eurocoin” on the blockchain, and at the same time, China is about to launch its own digital Yuan. More so, even banks are getting in on the action as it was again reported this week that US financial giant Wells Fargo would be piloting its own digital coin.
The main vanguard being put up by all these institutions against Facebook – while also mentioning their own cryptocurrency plans – has been taking action against a private company launching a sovereign currency.
This is despite Facebook’s David Marcus, in a series of tweets, attempting to put to rest the various fears raised by governments around the world by explaining that the notion of Libra negatively affecting the “monetary sovereignty of nations” is wrong for several reasons.
Regardless, Facebook continues to hit walls and face different regulatory fires, in its attempt to launch a fairly revolutionary product that could have major implications for the general adoption of cryptocurrencies by the general population.