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On May 24, the Chinese city of Zhengzhou announced a series of policy proposals to support metaverse companies operating in the region. As part of these initiatives, the municipal government will set up a 10 billion yuan ($1.42 billion) special fund to stimulate the growth and development of the industry.
According to the government project, Metaverse companies that decide to relocate their headquarters to Zhengzhou will be able to raise up to 200 million yuan ($28.34 million) in seed capital. Companies will also qualify for other benefits, including rental subsidies.
Any company developing metaverse use cases in the city, regardless of its headquarters location, will have the opportunity to receive up to 5 million yuan ($710,000) for each project certified as viable by the municipal government.
A specific date for disbursement of funds has not yet been disclosed. In addition to unveiling the funding policy, the Zhengzhou municipal government also laid out its long-term vision for the development of the metaverse in the city. By the end of 2025, the metaverse-related industries in Zhengzhou are expected to achieve annual revenues in excess of 200 billion yuan ($28.34 billion).
This policy applies to local businesses operating in two distinct areas: 1) research efforts focused on metaverse-related technologies such as virtual reality, augmented reality, and brain-computer interfaces; and 2) the use of metaverse technologies in real-world industries such as like education, entertainment and trade.
In addition, the government will work with other government agencies and investment firms to secure an additional 50 billion yuan ($7.08 billion) in funding to support various metaverse-related development projects. In addition, the city intends to offer cash rewards to metaverse companies once they are listed on China’s major stock exchanges.
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The plan includes blockchain—a critical technology in the metaverse industry—along with next-generation computer rendering, human-computer interfaces, and artificial intelligence. In addition, it aims to create a digital asset market using non-fungible token technology.
Zhengzhou has joined a host of Chinese cities and provinces in pledging to become leaders in the development of the country’s metaverse. The southeastern metropolis of Shanghai is actively pursuing its metaverse aspirations, predicting that its metaverse industry will reach 350 billion yuan ($49.6 billion) in annual revenue by 2025.