Facebook warns investors that Libra digital currency might never see the light of day

Facebook reminded investors in its latest quarterly report that whereas it expects to launch its Libra digital currency in 2020, a number of things could keep that from happening.


In the risk factors section of the report, Facebook said it acknowledges the importance of the pushback that’s come from lawmakers and regulators since the project was proclaimed in June.


“Libra has drawn vital scrutiny from governments and regulators in multiple jurisdictions and we expect that scrutiny to continue,” Facebook said in its filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.


In addition, market acceptance of such currency is subject to important uncertainty. As such, there may be no assurance that Libra or our associated merchandise and services will be made accessible in a timely manner, or at all. We don’t have significant prior experience with digital currency or blockchain technology, which can adversely have an effect on our ability to with success develop and market these merchandise and services.


David Marcus, who is spearheading the development of Libra and also the Calibra digital wallet project at Facebook, has said the currency will be “a more economical, low-priced and secure alternative” payment tool for those who can’t afford to transfer cash using traditional ways.


Since revealing plans for Libra and Calibra last month, the corporate has faced criticism from public officials within the U.S.A. and abroad.


Earlier this month, Marcus testified before the U.S. Senate Banking Committee and the House financial Services Committee and was grilled by lawmakers during both sessions.


U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell have also voiced their issues with Libra, and similar reservations have been raised by French minister of finance Bruno Le Maire and European central bank executive board member Benoit Coeure.


In a statement to CNBC on Monday, a Facebook representative said that between now and the product’s launch the corporate will be operating openly with all of the concerned parties.


“We know that the journey to launching Libra will be an extended one and that we cannot do this alone,” the representative wrote. “Engaging with regulators, policymakers, and specialists is essential to Libra’s success. This was the total reason that Facebook alongside other members of the Libra Association shared our plans early.”


Facebook chief executive officer Mark Zuckerberg made similar comments on a decision with analysts on Wednesday. A few years ago, the corporate “would have most likely just showed up and tried to unleash a product on our own,” he said.


“Now the approach on all of those fronts is to outline the concepts and the values that we think an ultimate service ought to have, leave open a period of how long it takes to deal with regulators and different specialists and constituents’ questions about this and so find out what the most effective way to move forward is,” Zuckerberg said.