Malaysia’s own Ministry of Youth and Sports (KBS), yes the same government body Syed Saddiq used to run, has announced a new esports initiative called Esports Integrated. the new KBS lead, Dato’ Sri Reezal Merican Naina Merican, officiated the event and this initiative.
Running this new shindig is a group called Impact Integrated, led by one Ahmed Faris Amir. So what does this initiative offer?
- The ESI is creating a brand new roadmap and a new core focus in “catalysing a vibrant, sustainable, and inclusive esports ecosystem in Malaysia”.
- The initiative will “will not only create opportunities to upskill our youth but also provide a platform to develop and improve the esports industry in the country”.
- ESI will be creating a “platform to manage and centralize the esports ecosystem. The platform will include a fully online tournament engine”.
- ESI will also form the Malaysia Esports Circuit “consisting of the Malaysia Esports Championship and the Malaysia Esports League with points from these major tournaments feeding into the centralised platform”.
ESI will also be developing a Capacity Building programme that will start in 2021. This programme will focus on upskilling tournament and event organizers, teams and coaches to raise the nation’s esports professional standard. ESI will also be creating KBS’s official Esports Hub in Spacerubix, Puchong. It’ll be completed in 2021 and will serve as a tournament/event venue as well as a training ground for professional teams and an area for esports networking.
ESI’s partners include Malaysia Electronic Sport Federation (formerly ESM back then), Techninier, eGG Network, VC Media & Consultancy, and Geek Fam.
Second Verse, Same As The First?
This ESI is a new initiative that heralds a new esports slate since Malaysia changed governments on 21st February of this year when COVID-19 happened. It also sounds similar to the esports blueprint plan KBS and ESM talked about last year before said emergency regime-changing.
Furthermore, this is the first people and esports folks have heard of Impact Integrated. Add in the fact that ESI has no legislative power and will focus its efforts on advocacy means that they may have their work cut out for them.
We’ll see how this pans out; the keyword here is “cautiously optimistic”. Here’s hoping for a future where Malaysia esports stuff gets done instead of a ton of hot air being blown around with little to nothing to show.