In terms of mainstream acceptance, one of the biggest announcements in the history of cryptocurrency came in 2019, when Facebook confirmed that they would be developing their own stablecoin. This came after months of speculation from the media and a lack of official word from the company.
The announcement of their Libra token and accompanying wallet meant that the billions of people who use Facebook around the world would be given the chance to make use of cryptocurrency. After almost two years of development and some regulatory setbacks, it seems that an official launch date for the stablecoin has been set.
Libra Coming Soon
Recent reports suggest that the company intends to roll out the token in January 2021. So far, the project has met pushback from regulators around the globe. Members of the Libra team were feared to appear in front of the United States Congress to defend the project and its possible implications for economic sovereignty. Even in the recent report, it was stated that the project’s release date was dependent on approval from the Financial Market Supervisory Authority in Switzerland.
Facebook had, back in 2019, applied for a license from the regulator and it seems that they might be on the path to approval. However, the final version of Libra that is on track to be released is a bit different from what was initially announced. In the Libra announcement, it was stated that the stablecoin would be backed up by multiple fiat currencies. Now, it is being suggested that the token will be pegged to only one fiat currency.
One of the possible reasons for this is the response seen from regulators, especially in the United States and Europe. There has been concern that such a token would facilitate criminal activities or threaten the economic independence of the places in which it is used.
Since the announcement of the Libra token, a number of countries have begun developing their own in-house stablecoins. China is rolling out its digital yuan and France is currently testing their digital euro. This begs the question of what reception the Libra token will receive upon its launch.
The token, and the renamed Novi wallet, will be rolled out to six high-traffic areas in its initial release. These areas include the United States in which the company is seeking licenses to operate in around 10 states even as the proposed launch date draws closer.