Shanghai includes Blockchain, NFTs, and Metaverse in its 5-Year development plan

Shanghai published a paper that details its intentions to strengthen innovations such as blockchain, NFTs, the Metaverse and Web3 in its five-year plan.
July 14, 2022 - Cynthia Chung

Shanghai announced that it officially intends to strengthen ‘cutting-edge technological breakthroughs’ such as blockchain, NFTs, the Metaverse and Web3 over the course of its next five-year plan. 


On July 13, Shanghai’s Municipal Government published a draft of its ‘14th Five-Year Plan for the Development of Shanghai's Digital Economy.’ The policy document sets its mission of ‘promoting the deep integration of digital technology and the real economy,’ with ‘scientists judging technology prospects’ and ‘entrepreneurs discovering market demand’ in order to advance the immersive integration of technology and economy. 


As part of the plan, Shanghai will support  enterprises to explore NFT marketplaces and those that research the digitization and trading of NFT and other digital intellectual property (IP). This is to encourage the development and deployment of ‘blockchain+’ technology and the creation of a ‘blockchain development ecosystem with autonomous governance.


To meet its Metaverse goals, the municipal government also said it will accelerate the research and deployment of cross-platform interaction between the virtual world and the real society through developing core technologies as well as encouraging the creation of new platforms with richer and more diverse content scenarios. 


The plan emphasizes the importance of new forms of Metaverse entertainment consumption, including virtual concerts, idols and sports. Technologies included are brain-computer interface, extended reality (XR) to enhance Metaverse experiences. 


Shanghai also intends to explore Web3 opportunities which will include the development of cross-platform OpenID, distributed data storage and decentralized Domain Name System (DNS). In addition, upgrading hardware and deploying 6G, Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6), sixth-generation wireless network technology (Wi-Fi6), and quantum communication.


There is no word on ‘decentralized finance (DeFi)’ but it does mention ‘digital finance’ along with a pledge to promote smart contracts and improve asset trading, payment and settlement, registration and custody. However, it focuses on the pilot of the digital yuan, which the Bank of China favors as a central bank digital currency (CBDC).


Shanghai also announced its goal of developing its Metaverse-related industries to US$52 billion by 2025. 


According to a report by The South China Morning Post, Shanghai’s municipal government also intends to establish a 10 billion yuan (around US$ 1.5 billion) fund to support Metaverse development. The head of Shanghai’s Economy and Information Technology Committee, Wu Jincheng said the fund will support 10 ‘leading’ companies and 100 small-sized firms, which could lead to the launch of 100 new metaverse products and services by 2025. 


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