It has not even been 48 hours since Facebook unveiled their plans of launching their crypto coin, Libra, which is supposed to operate on a private blockchain and have its own specifies wallet. Libra will be a fiat currency-backed digital asset and is all set for a 2020 launch.
Facebook has cited intentions of providing financial power to 1.7 billion of the world’s under-banked population as the main aim behind this project. However, it seems that this number might not be completely correct. Reports say that they might not launch Calibra, their in-house digital asset wallet, in India, the touted top destination for the cryptocurrency given the user base of WhatsApp and the country’s huge remittance market. It has also been anticipated that India will pose strong regulatory resistance.
A Calibra spokesperson stated,
“The Libra Blockchain will be global, but it will be up to custodial wallet providers to determine where they will and will not operate.”
Joining forces with India are countries like China, North Korea, and Iran.
A clash or cooperation might be in the works in India as the Facebook-owned messaging application, WhatsApp, already has a peer-to-peer payment platform in the country. WhatsApp Pay, while yet to be launched and still in its beta phase, is run in partnership with the government-backed payments project, United Payments Interface [UPI]. In an interview to Economic Times, a Facebook spokesperson said that cooperation will be the trodden path, not just in India, but around the globe.
“We expect Calibra to work on WhatsApp and be available globally.”
India has been deliberating on a long time about the status of cryptocurrencies, and their stance has been on the whole a negative one.
Indian government officials have already displayed a negative stance towards cryptocurrencies, with a recent response to an RTI application revealing the government’s apprehension about the same. ET reported,
“Facebook has not filed any application with RBI (Reserve Bank of India) for its cryptocurrency in India.”