Photo: Bloomberg

In June 2019, Facebook made a daring announcement: Within a year, it would launch a new global currency, the Libra. The idea was to offer an alternative to national currencies in cross-border transactions, and to provide a payment network for billions of unbanked people.

A strictly digital token, the Libra was to be issued by an association in Switzerland and backed by a basket of national currencies, implying that its creators sought independence from sovereign powers.

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