Five European countries are working together to make sure Libra doesn’t launch in Europe. According to political news outlet Politico France is taking charge, while working together with Germany, Spain, Italy and The Netherlands. These countries have created an unified front after several backroom meetings in October.
The opposition by these five European countries makes it more difficult for Libra introduce their stablecoin in Europe. Perhaps this is a way for governments to make sure that more companies step away from the Libra Foundation.
Currently 21 companies are part of the foundation, which is led by Facebook. Among those companies and organizations are Uber and music streaming service Spotify. They want to introduce a cryptocurrency called libra, which would be available to 2.4 billion users worldwide thanks to Facebook’s social network.
Governments are afraid that the digital currency would undermine their control over national finances. In the United States politicians are afraid that the anonymous nature of cryptocurrencies will make it easier to fund terrorism or money-laundering, while several European countries expressed their fears for their sovereignty.
Countries want own digital currency
The European Union wants to regulate libra and want to make sure that the digital currency doesn’t hurt the euro. At the same time several European countries have already expressed their wishes for a digital currency of their own. According to ING Bank and earlier this week IBM, Central Bank Digital Currencies are unavoidable. Every national bank will have to move to a digital currency or they will be left behind.
Switzerland has already announced a digital currency, while Sweden seems to like the idea as well. However, those two European countries are not dealing with the euro. Within the European Union there are several countries that are still not using the euro. It’s probably easier for those countries to embrace a digital currency.
Germany, France, The Netherlands, Spain and Italy all have the euro as their national currency. Germany has openly expressed its wishes for a digital euro, but this is still a few years away. National governments, the European Union and many other government bodies still need to come to an agreement.
Blockchain easier in small economies
Smaller countries will have an easier time to introduce national digital currencies. Over the past twelve months we’ve seen countries like Malta, The Marshall Islands, San Marino, and Liechtenstein introduce all kinds of blockchain-powered initiatives. Malta is putting rental contracts, company registrations and much more on a blockchain. In addition The Marshall Islands introduced a cryptocurrency to use alongside the US dollar, while Liechtenstein approved The Blockchain Act.
Also published on Medium.