Facebook Libra
Credits: Wikimedia Commons

The long awaited Facebook-led cryptocurrency Libra might finally see the light of day, but not exactly as it was first proposed. According to a report by Financial Times, Libra Association is preparing to launch its currency as early as January, 2021.

According to the report which cites three unidentified people involved in the cryptocurrency, the association is now going to launch only a single currency based on the US dollar, the rest will be launched at a later point in time. This will be a huge downgrade in comparison with the initial plans shared by Facebook at the time of Libra’s first announcement.

Facebook unveiled its digital currency Libra back in 2019. The social media giant announced that the ambitious project will be governed and controlled by a group of members called Libra Association, which Facebook is also a part of.

Initially, the plan was to create a single cryptocurrency backed by multiple real currencies, but it was soon met with criticism from global regulators. The regulators warned that it could threaten monetary stability and that it might become a hotbed for money laundering.

Libra Association, as a response to the criticism, later downgraded their grand plan. The current plan is to create multiple separate coins, which will be digital versions of already existing physical currencies, along with one “digital composite” coin based all of the other coins. According to FT’s report, the coin based on US dollar will be launched first, and the other coins along with the composite coin will be rolled out at a later point.

This latest development in the progress towards Libra’s launch comes soon after the popular cryptocurrency Bitcoin exceeded $19,000 in value for the first time after 2017. However, yesterday, the cryptocurrency, along with others, saw a sharp decline in value.

Libra, on the other hand, is not the same as the other cryptocurrencies. Libra, as proposed, is a stablecoin backed by real and already existing currencies. This difference in the concept of the coin will help Libra avoid the volatility which plagues all the regular cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.

The Libra Association had a very rocky start, as they faced global criticism and also lost several founding members such as PayPal, Mastercard, Vodafone and eBay. The Geneva-based Libra Association are now waiting for the approval from the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority, and the launch date of the Libra cryptocurrency largely depends on it.