United States President Donald Trump criticised Bitcoin, Facebook’s proposed Libra and a host of other forms of cryptocurrencies on Thursday, demanding that they face banking regulations.
Writing on Twitter, Mr Trump said “I am not a fan of Bitcoin and other Cryptocurrencies, which are not money, and whose value is highly volatile and based on thin air.”
He also added that “If Facebook and other companies want to become a bank, they must seek a new Banking Charter and become subject to all Banking Regulations, just like other Banks, both National and International.”
This comes after Facebook announced last month that it will be launching its own global cryptocurrency system in 2020, in an association with 28 partners in order to form the Libra Association which will govern the new coin. Some of the partners include Mastercard Inc., PayPal Holdings Inc, eBay Inc. and also Visa Inc.
There are currently no banks that are part of the group.
Whilst Facebook has led the development of the cryptocurrency, it intends to hand control over to an association which will have its base in Geneva, Switzerland. This association will take control of the platform’s management and also the funds that are used to support the cryptocurrency.
Mr Trump’s comments come just one day after the Federal Reserve Chairman, Jerome Powell, told lawmakers that the proposal made by Facebook to build its own cryptocurrency – Libra – cannot progress until the company addressed worries that surround it with regards to privacy, money laundering and financial stability.
Powell added that the Federal Reserve had formed a working group in order to track the developments of the project, whilst also working with central banks from other countries, many of which have also voiced their concern with regards to Facebook’s digital currency project.
Mr Trump criticised cryptocurrencies and Bitcoin in particular even further, claiming that “Unregulated Crypto Assets can facilitate unlawful behaviour, including drug trade and other illegal activity.”
Bitcoin is currently the most famous digital coin, and whilst created in 2008 as an alternative to currencies that are managed and controlled by governments and banks, it gained massive amounts of popularity during late 2017 and early 2018. Such a rise is depicted by its change in the period between November and December of 2017, with the currency being equal to €5,152 in November, and a staggering €17,573 in December during its peak.
The cryptocurrency market has faced several allegations throughout the last few years over money laundering and terrorist financing.
This series of tweets by Mr Trump also comes at the end of an event at the White House, during which he criticised large technology companies over them treating conservative voices in an unfair manner.