More blows for Libra as more partners pull out

Daniel Fowler
October 15, 2019

Mastercard and Visa have become the latest backers to withdraw their support for the Facebook Libra cryptocurrency. Visa, in particular, said that it will continue to evaluate the situation, as well as the regulating body's ability to "fully satisfy all requisite regulatory expectations". Dante Disparte, the head of policy and communications at Libra Association, told Reuters that the recent flight of major backers is "a correction; it's not a setback".

In a sign of another blow to Facebook Libra, a new report from a taskforce of officials from the G7 group of nations is said to have raised concerns about the safety, security and other issues surrounding the cryptocurrencies.

The report also mentioned - presumably in an indirect reference to the repeated assurances given by the Libra Association - that "addressing such risks is not necessarily a guarantee of regulatory approval for a stablecoin arrangement".

While PayPal was more vague about its reasons for leaving, Visa said in a statement that Facebook needed to act in order to ensure that it was meeting its regulatory requirements and it left the door open to more work in the future.

Requested by the Telegraph remaining week if it might maybe well stand by the project publicly, a spokeswoman for Booking Holdings refused to comment.

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At the meeting in Geneva, members agreed interim articles of association laying out how the organization will be governed, as required by Swiss law, according to a fact sheet provided by the Libra Association.

David Marcus, leader of the Libra project and ex-president of PayPal, tweeted that the exit of six partners would not disrupt the work.

I would caution against reading the fate of Libra into this update.

I wouldn't give them [the lawmakers] too much credit, because at Treasury we wrote letters as well and we've been very clear. Change of this magnitude is hard. The over-ambitious project of the social media giant that was set out to make Libra the global digital currency has been facing headwinds ever since its launch.

"We look forward to the inaugural Libra Association Council meeting in just 3 days and announcing the initial members of the Libra Association".

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