In the past year, more than 150 Web3 firms have set up operations in Hong Kong’s Cyberport, a digital hub set up by the country’s government to promote innovation, Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po said in a statement.
The influx came after the Hong Kong government invested $7 million (50 million yuan) to help Cyberport speed up the development of Web3 with blockchain as the supporting technology, Chan Mo-po said.
Chan Mo-po detailed the Hong Kong government’s investments in the sector, and said that Cyberport has been allocated around $64 million (HK$500) in funding for the “Digital Transformation Support Pilot Programme,” an initiative aimed at helping small and medium-sized businesses to implement digital solutions.
Cyberport, which is managed by the wholly-owned government subsidiary of the Hong Kong SAR administration, hosts a total of 1,900 enterprises, the statement said.
Hong Kong introduced its own crypto legislation allowing retail investors to invest directly in crypto assets last year and presented itself as keenly pro-crypto.
Since then, the country has continued to support the industry. In January, as the crypto industry was reeling from the FTX crisis, the Financial Secretary said that local government and regulators are looking forward to building a crypto and fintech ecosystem in 2023.
On Jan. 13, Korean tech giant Samsung announced the launch of a Bitcoin Futures Active ETF, or exchange-traded fund, on the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong.
In mid-February, sources claimed that some Chinese officials were reportedly giving tacit approval to Hong Kong’s pro-crypto efforts. Local business operators stated that the Chinese government might even be open to using Hong Kong as a test bed for crypto as long as it doesn’t threaten the country’s financial stability.
By March, more than 80 crypto firms had expressed interest in opening an office in Hong Kong.