Libra Gets Enthusiastically Welcomed Into Geneva

By Rushali Shome

Facebook’s pet project Libra seems to have caught the fancy of Switzerland as the country’s authorities have evidently decided to walk a path very different from those of most other policymakers across the globe. In fact Facebook has decided to set up its offices in the Swiss city of Geneva and take advantage of the country’s warm attitude to the crypto project.

As the Geneva canton’s chief of economic development Pierre Maudet said last week, the area’s authorities are looking forward to working with Facebook and are even quite “excited” about the same. This comment was made after Facebook chose to open up the headquarters of Libra Association, the body that will govern the payments network connected to Libra crypto, in Geneva. From here, the Libra Association will manage a financial reserve meant for the cryptocurrency.

The Swiss State Secretariat for International Finance stated that it can be interpreted as a “positive sign that Switzerland can play a role in an ambitious international project.” Switzerland has always rolled out the red carpet for crypto projects so far and this time it doesn’t seem to be any different.

The move is also reflective of how relaxed the country usually is with regard to its regulatory environment, especially in the realm of finance. The country’s officials are usually unfailingly encouraging of crypto initiatives and are seemingly less bothered than other regulators worldwide about the possibility of crypto being misused by criminal elements.

Switzerland even has its very own “Crypto Valley” in the form of Zug, where the low tax rates have converted it into a haven for crypto businesses to set up shop. Speaking of this propensity for crypto firms to settle in Switzerland, KPMG partner Sven Korschinowski noted:

“Switzerland’s regulation is much lighter than in other European countries when it comes to cryptocurrencies.It made sense for Libra to come to Switzerland.”

Clearly, the country’s stance on crypto is drastically different from that of most other regulators, most notably in France and US, where they have expressed their doubts about Libra.

Rushali Shome

Rushali Shome is a history undergraduate with a keen interest in puns, politics and beyond. When not typing away furiously in the “Notes” section of her phone, she can be found trying to catch the eye of servers at restaurants or weddings for a second helping.

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