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Still concerned about Facebook cryptocurrency after Swiss meeting: US lawmaker

Still concerned about Facebook cryptocurrency after Swiss meeting: US lawmaker
August 26, 2019
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The chair of the US House Financial Services Committee said on Sunday she remained concerned about Facebook’s plans for a digital currency after meeting the government officials in Switzerland that Facebook has said will regulate it. “While I appreciate the time that the Swiss government officials took to meet with us, my concerns remain with allowing a large tech company to create a privately controlled, alternative global currency,” Congresswoman Maxine Waters said in a statement. Facebook (FB.O) is trying to get Washington on its side after the social media company shocked regulators and lawmakers with its announcement in June that it was hoping to launch a new digital coin called Libra in 2020. Policymakers and financial watchdogs at home and abroad are concerned about the effect of widespread adoption of Libra by Facebook’s 2.38 billion users on the global financial system. The currency will be issued and managed by the Geneva, Switzerland-based “Libra Association”, Facebook has said. Waters met representatives from Switzerland’s State Secretariat for International Financial Matters, the Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner, the Financial Market Supervisory Authority, and Swiss legislators. The Swiss officials were helpful in understanding the “status, complexity, and magnitude of Facebook’s plans,” she said. US lawmakers bashed Facebook over its plans at a hearing of Waters’ committee in July, saying the company had not shown it could be trusted to safeguard the world financial system and consumers’ data. on july 18, US lawmakers bashed Facebook over its planned cryptocurrency, saying the company had not shown it could be trusted to safeguard the world financial system and consumers’ data. The social media company is fighting to get Washington on its side after it shocked regulators and lawmakers with its announcement on June 18 that it was hoping to launch a new digital coin called Libra in 2020. It has faced criticism from policymakers and financial watchdogs at home and abroad who fear widespread adoption of the digital currency by Facebook’s 2.38 billion users could upend the financial system. “I have serious concerns with Facebook’s plans to create a digital currency and digital wallet,” Maxine Waters, chairwoman of the Democrat-controlled House Financial Services Committee, said in her opening remarks.