Facebook’s Libra digital currency project may finally hit the ground running in January 2021 with the launch of a dollar-pegged stablecoin.
The single digital currency pegged to the dollar is a far cry from the ambitious plans first introduced back in 2019.
Pushback from major financial regulators around the globe has likely caused the project to be downgraded significantly even as several nations pursue central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) in response to private stablecoins like Libra.
Limited Libra Stablecoin Roll-out Coming Early 2021
According to a report by the Financial Times (FT) on Nov. 27, Libra is working on modalities to introduce a digital currency specie in early 2021. Inside sources at the company say the Facebook-led project plans to roll-out a dollar-pegged stablecoin in January.
The proposed launch will depend on approvals from Switzerland’s Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA). Libra previously applied for a payments license from the Swiss regulator back in September 2019.
Launching a single stablecoin appears to be another downgrade of the project. When first announced, the Libra digital currency system was to be a token backed by a basket of national fiat currencies.
Financial regulators, especially those in Europe railed against the idea. At the time, most opponents of the plan said Libra could jeopardize sovereign monetary policy control mechanisms across the world.
As previously reported by BeInCrypto, Libra has since made wholesale changes to the project. Back in June, the Libra Association published an updated white paper detailing that it would deploy multiple fiat currency-backed stablecoins.
According to FT sources, the other planned stablecoins in the Libra digital currency catalog will come at a later time.
A Change of Plans
Reports suggest the Novi wallet is ready for use but the plan is to stage a limited roll-out of the service across six high-volume remittance corridors including the U.S. and some countries in South America.
Facebook is also reportedly waiting on licensing approval from 10 state regulators in the U.S. including a BitLicense from New York.
While Libra moves closer to its launch date, many countries are experimenting with CBDCs. Major financial institutions like the Bank for Internation Settlements (BIS) are also proposing more robust regulations for private stablecoin projects.