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Are China and the West on the same page when it comes to the Metaverse and Web3?

Although there hasn’t been the level of demand for metaverse solutions that was expected and business models have been challenged, the metaverse is not over. Some aspects are still heavily used and very popular, such as large metaverses like Minecraft and Roblox. Others are still developing, just not as fast or in the ways that some had hoped.

Virtual worlds and Web3 are the inevitable next evolution of the internet, and despite the buzz increasing or decreasing, we need to look beyond the hype and prepare for it for our businesses, industries, and economies. Below is a short excerpt from my latest mini-book called Metaverses for Business: How China and the Rest of the World are Exploring Web3. It helps professionals to understand what metaverses are and explores the current state of metaverses and Web3 solutions for businesses in China and other countries.

Policymakers in different countries are operating at different speeds

Technology goals were included in China’s most recent 5-year plan and in November 2022, The Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) published a plan to develop the virtual reality (VR) sector and integrate it with industrial applications. This was China’s first national-level policy on VR. The plan, recognizing that China is still currently dependent on hardware and technology from outside the country in some areas, also stresses homegrown tech development to avoid supply chain issues and to build tech resilience.

China published a plan to develop the virtual reality (VR) sector and integrate it with industrial applications, which was its first national-level policy on VR.

In January 2022, at least 10 Chinese cities and provinces, including Shanghai and Beijing, added metaverse-related industries to their economic development plans. According to a report released in August 2022, by the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Economy and Information Technology, by 2025, the Chinese capital hopes to cultivate one or two leading virtual human companies with annual sales exceeding 5 billion RMB (about 724 million USD) each, as well as ten other significant businesses with annual sales of 1 billion RMB (about 145 million) each. Another Shanghai government project is to build a virtual, fully functional city hall.


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