The social media giant has endured a tough week thus far in Europe as its Libra token plans have come under fire from leading financial officials. First it was in France, then Germany and now in Spain.
However, a new report suggests that the UK regulators could be interested in engaging with Facebook about its Libra plans, unlike their continental neighbors.
According to a Reuters report Reuters report, Facebook had three meetings with UK finance ministry, central bank and regulatory officials in the lead-up to its Libra announcement.
Details of what was discussed in those meetings are yet to be released but Reuters, who issued a freedom of information request to the UK government, reported the following:
On April 23, Facebook officials held discussions with a junior minister and representatives in charge of crypto policy at Britain’s finance ministry in London to talk about Libra.
On April 24, Facebook had a meeting with the regulatory Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), also to discuss about Libra.
On May 14, the company met again with finance ministry and FCA officials, with the Bank of England representatives also in attendance.
Facebook officially announced Libra plans on June 18.
Reuter’s freedom of information request also revealed that “authorities posed five questions to the company ahead of the meeting.”
A spokesperson for the UK finanance ministry “declined to comment on Libra,” but claimed that the ministry wants the country “to harness the potential benefits of cryptocurrencies while maintaining market transparency, protections and standards.”
In August, Bank of England governor Mark Carney made a comprehensive proposal for an overhaul of the international financial system that would eventually replace the dollar as a reserve currency with a Libra-like digital one.
However, the Spanish central bank has also spoken out about the recent European doubts regarding Libra. According to an ABC report, the deputy governor of the Bank of Spain, Margarita Delgado, stated that “[Libra] could become a destabilizing element for the economy.”
She called for “coordinated international action” to be implemented to keep Libra in check, and talked about a “pressing need” to “subject Libra to demanding regulatory and supervisory standards.”
Ms Delgado’s warning seems to reflect the sentiments of the nation’s banking industry. The president of the Spanish Banking Association said that Libra was “interesting from a range of perspectives,” but warned that it poses a “threat to national sovereignty.”