Beijing bares 2-year metaverse development plan


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China’s capital city of Beijing is looking to establish itself as a leader in metaverse technology adoption in the country and globally. The city’s government has published an ambitious two-year plan to bring more metaverse development into its innovation zones.

The document titled “Beijing Urban Sub-Center Metaverse Innovation and Development Action Plan (2022-2024)” spells out the government’s aim to use metaverse technology to showcase the city’s rich culture and tourism content.

The city also hopes to pioneer cutting-edge use cases of the metaverse, including digital design, digital humans/twins, mixed reality and digital arts, building information modeling (BIM), 3D visualization, and city information modeling, among others.

While these innovations will rely heavily on the virtual world definition of the metaverse, the government also plans to explore the development of digital assets and NFT platforms and integrate blockchain and other emerging technologies such as AI, IoT, and 5G in achieving its metaverse goal.

The plan consolidates the work done by the Beijing International Science and Technology Innovation Center that looks to build a global digital economy benchmark city in Beijing’s sub-center.

All sub-district offices, township and town people’s governments, committees, offices, and bureaus of the district government and district agencies will work on implementing the plan by carrying out key tasks. These tasks include supporting and collaborating with research institutes and industry players in urban planning, education, tourism, and culture.

“Relying on the advantages of Beijing’s science and technology innovation, it will work with relevant think tanks to monitor industrial innovation trends, sort out the innovation and entrepreneurship of key enterprises in subdivided fields, and compile a map of Metaverse’s industrial innovation resources,” the document said.

However, the policy documents did not mention budget allocations or grants for the initiative.

China still open to metaverse and blockchain technology

Beijing is not the first Chinese city to promulgate a metaverse technology adoption strategy. Back in July, the government of Shanghai published its five-year digital economy promotion playbook. The plan focuses on developing blockchain, metaverse, NFTs, and Web 3.0, among other significant innovations.

The city governments have taken their cue from the central government, which has also opened its arms to emerging technologies while banning digital assets trading and mining.

According to a CNBC report, the Chinese government has formed an industry body to act as a standard setter for the country’s metaverse technology adoption plans. The China Mobile Communications Association is already set to work with registering tech companies on metaverse applications.

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