US lawmakers are heading to Switzerland in the next few days to in-depth discussions on the Facebook Libra project. The group, which comprises six lawmakers, will meet with Adrian Lobsiger, who is the commissioner of the Swiss Federal Data Protection and Information Commission. Maxine Waters (D), chair of the House Financial Services Committee, will lead the delegation.
In the past, she has been quite critical of the Facebook Libra project. In July, she compared the project to Equifax Inc. and Wells Fargo & Co., two companies that have been embroiled in consumer scandals. She has also stated that if Facebook were to launch the Libra token, the company could wield so much power that it could disrupt how central banks and governments work.
Discussions on Crypto Regulation
While Libra will be the main point of discussion, committee members will also discuss crypto regulation in general. During the July Senate hearings, members of the committee had questioned the rationale of locating the project in Switzerland, when Facebook itself is an American company.
David Marcus, Facebook’s Libra Chief, told them that they had picked the country because it was an international hub with an environment conducive to business. He also claimed that they had contacted the Swiss financial regulator regarding the Libra project. However, the head of communications at the Swiss financial regulator released a statement shortly after contradicting the claim. In the statement, he said that Facebook had not been in touch with them regarding registration of the Libra project.
Later on, the Swiss financial regulator sent a Letter to the Libra Association, which is going to be the governing body for the Libra project. In the letter, the association was requested to provide details about the project. For one, the regulator wanted to know about the kind of personal data that the project would gather. This way, the Swiss financial regulator could accurately gauge the extent of their advisory competencies as well and the supervisory powers that would apply.