E-sports’ debut as medal event at Asian Games will boost industrial growth

E-sports has been named as a full medal event for the 2022 Asian Games, after the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) General Assembly approved its place on the program on Dec. 16, 2020. This move will help promote the overall growth of the e-sports industry and drive the integration of the industry chain, according to industry experts.

A young player competes in an e-sports event in Taicang, Jiangsu province.(China Daily/Ji Haixin)

The actual sales revenue of China’s e-sports game market will reach 136.6 billion yuan (about $20.9 billion) in 2020, an increase of 41.8 billion yuan compared with that in 2019, with a year-on-year increase of 44.2 percent, according to a report jointly released by the game publishing working committee of the China Audio-video and Digital Publishing Association and the China game industry development research institute.

The report further pointed out that in 2020, the number of users of China’s e-sports games will reach 488 million, a year-on-year increase of 9.7 percent.

Traditional sports industry has been battered by the onset of the COVID-19 outbreak this year, whereas, e-sports, by taking its unique advantage, emerges as one of the pillar industries for the economic development of many cities.

China boasts more than 10, 000 e-sports enterprises at present, with more than 200 cities currently developing in the industry. Among them, Shanghai is working hard to become “the world capital of e-sports,” followed by other Chinese cities including Beijing, Guangzhou, Chengdu and Haikou.

These cities seek to get in-depth deals with more e-sports manufacturers and clubs, focusing on the development of fields such as industrial incubation and personnel training.

“As e-sports has become an Asian Games medal sport, it is making a tremendous positive impact on the whole e-sports industry,” said Du Mingjiang, vice president of Bixin platform, one of China’s earliest providers of e-sports training partners.

From experts’ perspectives, the naming of e-sports as a full-medal event for the 2022 Asian Games will propel the growth of the market size, as the industry has ushered in a phase of rapid development after e-sports became a “demonstration sport” in the 2018 games. 

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