US lawmaker visit to Switzerland changes nothing for Libra

One of the most prominent voices against Libra in the U.S. met with Swiss regulators recently, and Facebook surely hoped that she might come around to their way of seeing things as a result. Maxine Waters doesn’t seem to have shifter her opinion very much though, and we’re back to where we started.

The democratic congresswoman from California, and chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee, Waters traveled to Switzerland to meet with the regulators who will oversee Libra. Upon her return, she issued a statement on August 25 to sum up her thoughts. The trip wasn’t for nothing. She stated:

Our discussions with representatives from the State Secretariat for International Financial Matters (SIF), the Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner (FDPIC), the Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA), and Swiss legislators were helpful in understanding the status, complexity, and magnitude of Facebook’s plans.

Has that changed her outlook on Libra though? Hardly. “My concerns remain with allowing a large tech company to create a privately controlled, alternative global currency,” she wrote. “I look forward to continuing our Congressional delegation, examining these issues, money laundering, and other matters within the Committee’s jurisdiction.”

Waters was one of the first lawmakers to speak out when Libra was first announced, questioning if we can truly trust Facebook to be a private monetary body. She was also the one who invited David Marcus, head of Calibra, to sweat before congress.

None of this will be good news to the Libra Association, although they couldn’t have expected a better result really. There was no way Waters was going to return from Switzerland with a positive opinion of either Facebook or Libra, so atleast getting her to admit that she appreciates what their plans are is a step forward.

Regardless, if they don’t get lawmakers around the world to start buying into their plans, the end of Libra could be near. They’ve already admitted that the digital currency may never launch, and anonymous sources are already indicating that key members to the association are building an exit strategy.

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