The digital currency that China is about to release on the market may have some things in common with Libra, the stablecoin that Facebook is working on.
It may actually reach the market sooner, considering that, according to some hypotheses, the launch of the Chinese digital currency, which does not yet have an official name, seems to be scheduled for November, while Libra will have to wait at least until mid-2020.
As Reuters reveals, the Deputy Director of the Central Bank of China (PBoC) Payments Department, Mu Changchun, said that an initial common characteristic will be the fact that Libra can be used on WhatsApp, while the Chinese digital currency can be used on Tencent’s WeChat and Alibaba’s Alipay.
Changchun also stated that the tokens that will be issued by the PBoC will be as safe as the banknotes issued by the same central bank and can be used even without an Internet connection.
Mu then added that they would have found the right balance in order to allow anonymous payments by preventing money laundering and that, as far as the IT design is concerned, there would be strong similarities with Libra, without it being just a copy obviously.
Moreover, according to several analysts, it was precisely the announcement of the launch of Libra that significantly accelerated PBoC’s projects in this regard, as the central bank probably decided to anticipate the market launch of similar projects by Chinese companies.
Mu himself explicitly stated that the advantage of digital currencies issued by central banks over those potentially issued by companies such as Tencent (WeChat) and Alibaba (Alipay) is that the commercial platforms run the risk of going bankrupt, causing inevitable losses to the owners of the tokens.
“It is to protect our monetary sovereignty and legal currency status. We need to plan ahead for a rainy day”.