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South Korea has a new $187M metaverse project

The national Metaverse will be used by the Ministry as a platform to expand the virtual industrial growth of cities, media, and education.

Gangnam, Seoul, South Korea / Image by: Domenico Convertini / Flickr

Mon, 28 Feb 2022, 10:03 am UTC

Facebook made headlines last year when it rebranded to highlight its metaverse-focused future plans. However, it now appears that the metaverse won’t be a playground for big tech firms as some governments have already made plans of setting up their own ecosystem to bolster the future growth of their economies.

For instance, South Korea’s Ministry of ICT, Science, and Future Planning has allocated 223.7 billion KRW ($186.7 million) for the creation of a broad Metaverse ecosystem, according to Cointelegraph. The project is aimed at supporting the growth of digital content and corporate growth within South Korea.

The Ministry said in a February 27 statement that the funding will be used to complete the four main objectives of the Metaverse ecosystem. Dubbed the Expanded Virtual World, it will be used by the Ministry as a platform to expand the virtual industrial growth of cities, media, and education.

The Ministry promised that content creators will enjoy support to help them attract the necessary talent to help them build on the platform. The government agency will also host a hackathon, a Metaverse developer contest, and community-oriented creative activities.

More importantly, the Metaverse platform will provide financial support for participants to accelerate the commercial expansion of their projects, according to Hashed CEO Simon Kim said. Hashed is a crypto ecosystem venture capital and incubator based in South Korea that has investments in various Metaverse projects such as The Sandbox and Decentraland.

Kim said that there is no problem with funding because the private sector has already been actively investing in the metaverse. “It is the regulatory issue that the government should pay more attention to,” he said. “In Korea, publishing of NFT games is prohibited, and token issuance is also prohibited.”

Park Yungyu, Head of Communication and Policy Department at the Ministry, said that the Metaverse platform is part of the government’s “Digital New Deal,” which is a set of policies aimed at fostering the growth of digital technologies. “It is important to create a world-class Metaverse ecosystem as the starting point to intensively foster a new hyper-connected industry,” he added.

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