A senior official at the US Treasury Department says Facebook will have to follow a rigid set of rules in order to launch its digital asset Libra.
The Under Secretary of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, Sigal Mandelker, told reporters that Libra and all crypto assets must comply with the country’s efforts to fight financial crime, reports Reuters.
“Whether it’s Bitcoin, Ethereum, Libra, our message is the same to all of these companies: anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism has to be built into your design from the get-go.”
Mandelker met with leaders in Switzerland to discuss Facebook’s stablecoin which is designed to be pegged to multiple currencies.
The social media giant has said it plans to designate Libra as a Swiss-based association, but so far it has not received approval in the country.
Facebook’s announcement of Libra triggered a backlash among US leaders in Congress.
In July, the company’s head of blockchain, David Marcus, faced a set of hearings on Facebook’s entry into the cryptocurrency space. He told lawmakers that Facebook has every intention of meeting any and all regulatory requirements.
“To be clear, the Libra Association expects that it will be licensed, regulated, and subject to supervisory oversight. Because the Association is headquartered in Geneva, it will be supervised by the Swiss Financial Markets Supervisory Authority (FINMA).
We have had preliminary discussions with FINMA and expect to engage with them on an appropriate regulatory framework for the Libra Association. The Association also intends to register with FinCEN as a money services business.”
Facebook has not set a launch date for Libra and says it wants to ensure that lawmakers and regulators are satisfied with its final product first.