China's First National NFT Marketplace is Set to Launch in 2023
The state-backed platform will act as a secondary market for NFTs and allow users to trade copyrights related to digital assets.
The Chinese government is now opening up to NFTs
According to Sina News, China will launch its first national NFT marketplace in Beijing on January 1st, 2023. The platform is built by the state-owned Chinese Technology Exchange and Art Exhibitions China in partnership with a private firm Huban Digital Copyrights Ltd.
Based on the report, the platform will act as a secondary market for NFTs and allow users to trade copyrights linked to digital collectibles. The project also seeks to "regulate and avoid excessive speculation in secondary NFT markets," according to a person familiar with the matter.
"In terms of industry supervision and regulation, digital assets represent a new form of commerce, and much regarding laws, regulations, and supervisory policies remains to be refined," said Yu Jianing, an expert on digital assets and metaverse development in China.
"Therefore, a deal of uncertainty exists. Platforms have a clear responsibility for the listing and trading of digital assets. Relative to intellectual property rights and digital copyrights, digital assets face a greater risk of regulatory soundness."
To be clear, the Chinese government is not opposed to NFTs as long as crypto transactions are not involved. That's the reason why NFTs are labeled as "digital collectibles" or "virtual collectibles" in China rather than "tokens," a term commonly used in Web3.
Cryptocurrency has been banned in China since 2021. However, the country is still open to NFTs and the metaverse. The nation's capital Beijing and its megacity, Shanghai, have so far announced plans to build their own metaverse industry.
Even so, strict regulations around digital assets in China have often put off many private tech companies. For instance, Tencent had to shut down its NFT platform Huanhe in August due to mounting regulatory scrutiny. With the state-backed marketplace now entering the scene, it remains to be seen whether it will help revive the NFT market in China.