Facebook Applies For BitLicense To Operate Libra In New York

Social media giant Facebook applies for a cryptocurrency business license that will enable the firm to use its virtual currency Libra in New York, as reported by Reuters on June 28. 
Notably, any firm looking to operate cryptocurrencies in New York needs to have a special license dubbed as BitLicense, granted by the state’s finance regulator, the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS). It seems that Facebook has applied for the same, in order to launch it recently announced cryptocurrency Libra in the state.
As per the report, the social media giant has also in talks with the regulators in England and Switzerland, purportedly to set the terms of compliance for its cryptocurrency. Reportedly, Libra is preparing to be launch by 2020, a spokesperson for the social media firm remarked:

“The scrutiny that we’ve seen is something that we expected and welcome… We announced this early by design in order to have this discourse in the open and gather feedback.”

Though it is also important to note that to achieve regulatory compliance for Libra, Facebook will have to satisfy thousands of different standards, owing to the apprehensiveness that regulators have towards cryptocurrencies. Sean Park, Founder and Chief Investment Officer at venture capital firm Anthemis is quoted as saying:

They will not get a free pass anywhere… And, given their intention to be global, they will ultimately need literally hundreds, perhaps thousands, of licenses from hundreds of different regulators across the globe.”

The report adds that Libra indeed has met with some resistance from the United States lawmakers, in part due to the past issues the firm have had with user privacy violations. 

Reportedly, Facebook representatives are scheduled to testify on Libra before Congress on July 16 and 17. Chairwoman Rep. Maxine Waters has further asked the firm to hold Libra developments until the hearings are completed:

“Given the company’s troubled past, I am requesting that Facebook agree to a moratorium on any movement forward on developing a cryptocurrency until Congress and regulators have the opportunity to examine these issues and take action.”

Read more: Cryptocurrency Scammer Sentenced To 86 Months In Prison

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