Malaysia has ‘first mover’ edge in e-sports, digital economy

Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng speaks during the launch of Razer's new Malaysian headquarters at Bangsar South City, Kuala Lumpur February 28, 2019. — Picture by FIrdaus Latif

Having gaming lifestyle brand Razer set up its headquarters here gives Malaysia “first mover” advantage in e-sports and the , Lim Guan Eng said today.

But the finance minister added that the government and the private sector must “get in early, fast and hard” if the country is to benefit from this development.

“We have first mover advantage to be part of this [digital] economy, where it is important to get in early, fast and hard. We believe as part of this digital economy we hope to be able to take advantage as a first mover,” he said in his speech at its launch.

Lim said he had been criticised by “traditionalists” for spending RM10 million on the gaming industry, but believes the investment will pay off for Malaysia's future.

He urged the public to be open to gaming's growing popularity even if they don't understand it fully as, saying it cannot be denied that the sector is worth US$200 billion industry and has overtaken the music and movie industries in terms of growth and volume.

“To be honest, I don't understand it myself. I used to scream at my kids for gaming and my son was actually a competitive gamer until I nipped his career in the bud.

“He never forgave me for that,” Lim related, to the audience's amusement.

Razer CEO Tan Min Liang thanked the Malaysian government for allocating a budget for e-sports and said he was happy on developing Malaysia's next generation of talent in the digital sector.

“How many countries in the world have a government as progressive to understand even e-sports to start off with and is able to understand the true potential of the gamers out there, US$200 billion industry and it is bigger than movies and music?

“I look and saw a government that has a budget for e-sports and is committed to drive it,” said Tan.

He promised to back the Malaysian e-sports team competing in the 2019 SEA Games in the Philippines which will see six medals being contested.

Being a competitive gamer himself, Tan recalled times when parents would berate their children, just like the finance minister once did, for playing too much video games.

“I think of all the times parents say playing video games is a waste of time, this is my final revenge, you can now win six gold medals for playing video games,” joked Tan.

Besides e-sports Razer is also investing in Malaysia as its financial technology hub in South-east Asia.

You might also like

Comments are closed.

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. AcceptRead More