Asia’s crypto revolution: Web3 growth in the East

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Asia’s crypto revolution: Web3 growth in the East Asia’s crypto revolution: Web3 growth in the East Elaine Zhu · 49 seconds ago · 3 min read

APAC leads the global march toward Web3 innovation with strategic regulations and a booming digital native economy.

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Updated: Mar. 16, 2024 at 8:12 pm UTC

Asia’s crypto revolution: Web3 growth in the East

Cover art/illustration via CryptoSlate. Image includes combined content which may include AI-generated content.

Over the years, the Asia Pacific region (APAC) has established itself as an impressive environment for the rapidly growing technology industry. From the bustling tech hub of Singapore to the financial might of Hong Kong, the flourishing Web3 community in Vietnam, and the impressive technological creativity of Japan, APAC has consistently been at the forefront of innovation.

With governments actively embracing blockchain, a highly skilled digital native population, and leading industry projects setting their sights on the region, APAC is set to lead the charge in shaping the future of Web3. 

Governments and Regulators Setting Pace 

One of the critical drivers of this journey is the progressive regulatory stance in key jurisdictions. Last year, Singapore became one of the first countries to implement stablecoin regulation. This solidifies the city-state’s commitment to fostering a secure crypto ecosystem for investors and provides a blueprint for others to follow. Singapore is setting clear standards and leading by example to show the world how regulatory frameworks can bring more trust and security to the ever-evolving crypto landscape. 

Hong Kong is also solidifying its position as a crypto hub. Introducing a licensing regime for Virtual Asset Service Providers (VASPs) and a regulatory framework for retail trading is a testament to the city’s dedication to embracing the future of financial technology. Furthermore, Hong Kong has embraced blockchain technology as a major component of its financial model.

Spearheaded in collaboration with the United Nations and the Bank of International Settlements, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority launched a groundbreaking initiative known as ‘Project Genesis 2.0‘ which yielded two innovative prototypes for green bonds in 2023, successfully executing the sale of the world’s inaugural tokenized green bond, valued at over $100 million USD.

Japan has signaled its commitment to improving the business and regulatory environment for Web3 companies. In a speech at last year’s WebX conference in Tokyo, Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida emphasized that the government intends to accommodate Web3 technologies, particularly regarding regulations around digital assets and content sharing. ]

The Prime Minister emphatically stated that “Web3 is part of the new form of capitalism,” leaving no doubts about the nation’s fierce commitment to fostering innovation.

Lastly, the approval of BTC spot ETFs in the US, stewarded by premier financial institutions such as BlackRock and Fidelity, represents a very positive milestone for the industry within American borders and could signal increased activity in APAC. Before this approval, UBS and HSBC made strides to offer customers access to new investment vehicles. With the creation of new regulated institutional products, the possibilities for increased market participation have grown exponentially.

Digital Natives Leading the Way

Perhaps the region’s most valuable positive element is the highly skilled and motivated digital natives. For so long, institutions and society have depended on specialized technologists and developers to lead the way in the field. But now, younger generations born into a digital world are transforming how new technologies are understood, regulated, implemented, and utilized.

This is most clear in the APAC region where progressive regulations, thanks to a novel working relationship between technologists, business leaders, and government officials, have resulted in a projected US $126.9 billion of spending from digital native businesses by 2026. 

The economic impacts of this exponential growth will be revolutionary, not only in the region but across the globe. On top of the impressive economic impacts, we can only begin to imagine how the new technologies and services created in this environment will positively impact industries from finance and banking to content sharing and entertainment.

Leading Web3 Adoption in 2024?

It’s no secret that adopting new technologies is an intricate process that requires extensive collaboration between technologists, businesses, and policymakers. This has historically been an arduous process for the tech industry, particularly due to the complexity of the subject matter, among other factors. Consequently, the regulatory framework brought forth by policymakers is often not reflective of industry, market, or consumer needs.  

Around the world, governments have struggled to balance their objectives and the tech industry’s needs. But, in the east, an impressive movement spearheaded by a digitally oriented population is underway – one that is successfully fostering the necessary collaboration between industry leaders and public officials while ensuring the industry continues to see the same success. 

For these reasons, APAC is on the brink of claiming its position as the world’s important region for Web3 innovation. With a convergence of technological prowess, innovative regulations, and a rapidly growing digital native economy, APAC nations have seamlessly embraced the innovative principles that define Web3, and the region is poised to serve not only as a catalyst but as a leader, in the global advancement of  Web3 technologies.

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