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South Korea has announced major investments into local metaverse projects.
On Tuesday, the ministry of science announced a KRW 40 billion (US$30 million) metaverse fund to help startups. One day later, the ministry announced a KRW 27.7 billion (US$21 million) investment in local services seeking metaverse solutions.
South Korea's former investment is hoped to encourage SMEs to explore the metaverse sector and to seek M&As to expand globally.
The latter investment will support 13 new projects covering sectors including healthcare, education and tourism.
Korean web3 wave
These investments come as South Korea actively attempts to strengthen its web3 sector. In February 2022, the country invested US$185 million to develop its metaverse ecosystem, and has continued to build ever since.
Most recently, Binance announced a partnership with a South Korean chairman Lee Woong-yeol to establish a new crypto exchange.
The Kolon-Binance partnered exchange would rival South Korean exchange Upbit, which has over 80% of the country's crypto market share.
Binance pulled out of South Korea in 2021 but has since planned to return to the region. As part of this initiative, Binance recently acquired a majority stake in South Korean crypto platform GOPAX.
Busan is even embracing crypto to the extent of striving to become a crypto hub of its own to combat the region's aging population.
However, authorities are watching closely. Just last month, South Korea's Financial Services Commission issued guidelines to prepare the country for the legalisation of securities tokens.
South Korean financial authorities are also planning to review staking services offered by local virtual asset exchanges in the aftermath of sanctions imposed on global exchange Kraken by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
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