South Korea pledges $9M in support of blockchain startups

South Korea has emerged as a hub for cutting-edge technology, particularly in the field of blockchain. The Korea Internet Security Agency (KISA) recently announced its plan to allocate $9 million in funding to support six startup companies in 2020.

The funding, amounting to 10.5 billion won (approximately $9 million), will be dedicated to 10 different projects aimed at assisting these startup companies in the coming year. Some of the funds will also be used to support projects over the next three to four years.

According to Min Kyung-sik, the head of KISA’s blockchain center, each project will receive a maximum of $1.2 million in funding.

The South Korean Ministry of Science and ICT revealed a comprehensive development plan last Thursday, outlining the country’s intentions to harness blockchain technology in various sectors. The plan involves collaboration between the ICT ministry and government agencies to explore the application of blockchain pilot programs and platforms in areas such as livestock supply chain management, online voting, real estate transactions, cross-border document distribution, and customs clearance.

South Korea has already announced the implementation of a new blockchain-based ID verification system in one of its regions. This system will enhance verification processes for graduation and employment certificates, benefiting both employers and government agencies.

Interested parties seeking funding have until November 11 to submit their applications. Both public and private sector projects will be considered, with the final funding decisions to be made on December 20. The public sector alone comprises around 400 government and government-related entities eligible for funding.

While this funding initiative represents a significant step forward, it falls short of the initially proposed ambitious plans. The original intention was to fund 12 projects with $11 million, but the budget has been reduced by nearly 20%.

The KISA has decided not to engage with cryptocurrency projects or crypto exchanges for assistance, but it remains open to collaboration with major financial institutions that can provide digital tokens to support the funding.

Overall, this funding initiative showcases South Korea’s commitment to supporting and nurturing blockchain innovation, fostering a thriving ecosystem for technological advancement in the country.

Sam Burnett

Sam Burnett is a seasoned journalist with a keen focus on the intersection of crypto, blockchain, and business. His work showcases an in-depth understanding of the digital economy and emerging tech trends.


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