France says Libra will not be allowed in Europe

Cornelia Mascio
Settembre 14, 2019

Speaking at an OECD event on Thursday, French finance minister Bruno le Maire warned that the development of the digital currency would undermine " government sovereignty" and that it can not authorise its use.

Libra, as now proposed by the tech giant, would raise concerns about market dominance, threaten the sovereignty of states, increase risks for consumers and business, and could even cause significant global financial disruption, Le Maire said at Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development in Paris. So I want to be very clear: "in these conditions we can not authorise libra's development on European soil", the French finance minister said.

Facebook's Libra cryptocurrency: A threat to national economies?

The proposed cryptocurrency was unveiled in June.

Despite the controversy, Bertrand Perez, general director of the Libra Association, told French magazine Les Echos, said he was confident about Libra launching in 2020. Perez maintained that Libra association was in constant dialogues with regulators and central banks.

Governments and policymakers have been in an uproar ever since Facebook debuted their Libra cryptocurrency to the world, prompting the first signs of stricter regulation around crypto and Bitcoin looming.

Other supporters of Libra include the payment companies - Visa, MasterCard and PayPal, and the ride-hailing apps, Lyft and Uber.

Among these worries are how Facebook would tackle money laundering, the potential funding of terrorism, and whether the transition of currency control from governments to private businesses could cause economic destabilization. Or is this so new that a whole new way of regulating needs to be invented?

No-one has yet forgotten the Cambridge Analytica scandal, in which the data of 87 million users was harvested without their consent for voter profiling purposes.

Also in France on Thursday, Google has agreed to pay a €500m ($554m) fine €465m ($515m) and to settle a four-year old tax fraud probe, according to Reuters.

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