Hong Kong last week saw the formation of Web3 Harbour, a nonprofit industry association, that aims to create a “model market” committed to the long-term development of a decentralised internet that maximises the societal and economic benefits of blockchain technologies.
Web3 is growing at an unprecedented pace, and even with macro headwinds, the market is expected to reach billions of users and trillions of dollars in value by 2030. Despite this massive opportunity, obscure terminology, insufficient understanding, opaque policies, inconsistent regulations, and varying degrees of leadership conviction remain barriers to Web3 growth.
As coordinated community, Web3 Harbour will help inform policy and regulation that accelerates Web3 innovation in Hong Kong.
The new association is composed of Web3 builders, investors, users, and leaders. Gary Liu, co-founder and CEO of Terminal 3 is founding chair with Lawrence Chu, co-founder and chairman of VSFG (parent company of Hong Kong’s first SFC-approved virtual asset manager), serving as the association’s founding vice-chair.
Member organisations include AngelHub, Animoca Brands, DLA Piper, Finoverse, FoundersHK, hi.com, HKG DAO, Memeland, PwC Hong Kong, Stratford Finance, Terminal 3, VSFG, Web3 Marketing Association, and WHub. InvestHK has also expressed their support to the association.
“Web3 Harbour is committed to promoting a pro-innovation, pro-collaboration, and truly inclusive environment for Web3 development in Hong Kong,” said Liu. “We look forward to working with stakeholders from across many sectors, including other associations that have been supporting the fintech, blockchain, and digital asset industries.”
Web3 Harbour plans to officially launch community and research activities in July, including regular forums for leadership exchanges, startup pitches, and industry education.
Chu, meanwhile, pointed out that while the benefits of Web3 are clear, its development will require an inclusive and action-oriented community that can promote responsible and sustainable change.
“The entrepreneurial, investment, and policy momentum in Hong Kong make it a prime market for the launch of an association that will become the champion for this industry and its future,” he added.
Forging a new frontier in decentralised internet
As Hong Kong becomes a global leader in virtual asset trading and infrastructure, it is important to have local organisations like Web3 Harbour that unite the industry's brightest minds, according to Yat Siu, co-founder and executive chairman of Animoca Brands.
“We are happy to join Web3 Harbour and amplify our collective efforts to advance the local development of Web3 and the open metaverse. Together, we will forge new frontiers and drive the mass adoption of the decentralised internet,” he said.
Minh Do, co-chief operating officer of Animoca Brands and a founding board member for Web3 Harbour, added: “The emergence of digital assets has created infinite possibilities for entrepreneurs. Establishing a forum now in which startups, investors, business leaders, and regulators can collaborate and address the opportunities and challenges that come with this new technology will benefit everyone.”
“We are building a platform for open discussion and cooperation to equip and support Web3 innovators in Hong Kong, and I am truly thrilled to be part of this remarkable journey,” said Karena Belin, co-founder of WHub and AngelHub, and a founding board member for Web3 Harbour. “
Aligned with our unwavering passion for driving impactful change and fostering an open ecosystem, WHub and AngelHub stand as dedicated partners of this association, and we are honoured to serve its mission alongside the esteemed board and exceptional member organisations,” she said.