Paul Chan Mo-po, the Hong Kong finance secretary, thinks this is the right time for the city to invest in web3 technology.
Web3 is maturing
According to reports on April 9, Mo-po is confident that despite the recent volatility witnessed in the cryptocurrency markets, marked by the collapse of major centralized exchanges and platforms, the time is right to promote development in web3.
Specifically, in a blog, Mo-po said the technology space is quickly evolving, and investment in the sphere could be timely. He added that an in-depth exploration of the technology would be beneficial as web3 is applied in more use cases. Mo-po explains that integrating web3 solutions can improve existing business models, which, in turn, can translate to benefits for users in the real economy.
In line with his optimism, Hong Kong allocated $6.4 million to develop the Cyberport business park. The objective is to accelerate web3 technology by organizing conferences and youth workshops.
On April 13, the city’s government will organize a digital economy summit that top cryptocurrency and blockchain development leaders will attend. The Hong Kong government plans to touch on, among other topics, blockchain technology. Leaders expected to attend include executives from Alibaba, Baidu, and Huawei, which are some of the top technology companies in China and across the globe.
Besides technology leaders, the deputy director of China’s cyberspace administration Cao Shumin and John Lee Ka-chiu, and Chen Dong, the deputy director of Beijing’s liaison office in Hong Kong, will deliver keynotes.
Plans to become a crypto and blockchain hub
Mo-po’s comments come when Hong Kong has expressed its openness to becoming a crypto and blockchain hub in Southeast Asia.
From June 2023, the city will begin issuing licenses to cryptocurrency exchanges. Ahead of this, there are over 80 international blockchain firms who have expressed interest, according to Christopher Hui, the Hong Kong Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury.
Besides licensing virtual asset service providers, Hong Kong plans to finalize stablecoin regulations in 2024.