The cryptocurrency, whose launch is scheduled for 2020, has met tough resistance in recent months on several fronts.

Several US congressmen have urged Facebook to pause the development until legislators have more time to investigate the potential consequences of the introduction.

The head of the US central bank has expressed concern about the crypto currency's potential link to possible money laundering, as well as deficiencies in consumer protection and financial stability.

And just three weeks ago, France's Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire warned that the project could lead to a "currency privatization" which could eventually undermine the sovereignty of states. Le Maire urged European countries to shut out Libra and instead invest in a publicly regulated cryptocurrency.

Visa and Mastercard doubtful

In the wake of the criticism, some of the project's heaviest partners, the credit card companies Visa and Mastercard, and a number of other financial players, have re-evaluated their participation, reports the Wall Street Journal, and cites sources close to the project.

According to newspaper reports, Facebook has now called representatives from its nearly 30 partners to a meeting in Washington DC on Thursday to discuss the project's continued path forward.

Threats the future of the currency

Facebook itself estimates that around 1.7 billion people worldwide will be able to access the new currency after its introduction. It has been marketed as a safe and inexpensive way for people to make transactions, such as sending money to family members in other countries.

However, if heavy players such as Visa and Mastercard leave the project, the potential impact of the currency may be considerably less. Without a strong network of financial partners, Facebook's ability to reach out to consumers and get larger companies to accept the currency as a means of payment is reduced, the Wall Street Journal reports.