FIRST AMMS ACCEPT MALAYSIA'S PROPOSAL FOR ASEAN SPORTS INDUSTRY YEAR IN 2013

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YOGYAKARTA, Dec 14 (Bernama) -- Calling on Asean to realise the potential of

sports in a region of 600 million, slightly less than 10 per cent of the world

population, Malaysia has proposed that 2013 be the Asean Sports Industry Year.

The proposal, presented at the first Asean Ministerial Meeting on Sports

(AMMS) here, was accepted and will be followed up at the second AMMS Senior

Official Meeting (SOM) in Kuala Lumpur next year.

In presenting the proposal, Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad

Shabery Cheek cited the immense demand by the Asean population for the sports

industry to grow as a big business.

"PriceWaterhouseCoopers estimates the global sports industry will be worth

US$133 billion in 2013. We can and should exploit this opportunity in what is

relatively an untapped market for Asean,” he said, addressing at the meeting at

this old capital of Indonesia Wednesday.

Ahmad Shabery said the proposal would be further discussed at the second SOM

of AMMS in Malaysia next year, when a plan will be devised for the Sports

Industry in Asean to contribute to and maximise the benefits of formation of the

Asean Community in 2015.

-- MORE

SHABERY-INDUSTRY 2 YOGYAKARTA

The minister was optimistic that the sports industry will benefit Asean, as

Europe has benefited since the formation of the European Community in 1993, when

the free movement of trade within the area accelerated the growth of their

sports industry.

"In football today, UEFA made US$1.83 billion in 2010 while FIFA registered

a lower revenue of US$1.28 billion. In short, UEFA made 42 percent more income

than even the world''s governing body," he said.

The formation of the European Community, he said, has unlocked valuable

commercial opportunities within sports through an open market, allowing larger

cross-border transactions in sponsorships, player transfers, licensing and

merchandising; an increase in gate receipts; sports tourism; and broader

distribution of television content.

It has also allowed for the growth of support services such as sports

medicine, sports marketing, sports-related courses, legal advice on intellectual

property, venue management, event management, sports administration, playing

turf experts, and many more.

The key to a successful and sustainable eco-system in sport is the tandem

effect of an exciting league with compelling broadcasting content, which forms

the business model of successful professional sports systems, from the National

Football League or NFL in the United States to the Barclays Premier League in

the United Kingdom.

-- MORE

SHABERY-INDUSTRY 3 (LAST) YOGYAKARTA

"Sky Television in the United Kingdom has been heavily dependent on the

English Premier League since its inception in 1992. In the first five years, 304

million pounds was paid by Sky to the Barclays Premier League.

"The latest television-rights package for three years was bought for 1.78

billion pounds. Generally, television rights represent about 40 percent of a

professional clubs total income," he said.

In Asean, Ahmad Shabery said, a similar successful model can be seen in the

AFF Suzuki Cup, which has generated the highest television viewership in the

Asean region.

"This demonstrates how the strong, friendly rivalry between Asean nations

can be converted into financial gains in sport. Do or die, we will get behind

our respective nations when it comes to sport," he said.

Another proposal by Malaysia accepted at the meeting was the development of

human capital and volunteerism in sports within Asean, a move toward providing

the necessary support to solidify the base that makes up the sports industry.

"Human-capital development is not only limited to sports studies, but also

to provide highly competent expertise in the areas of law, finance,

broadcasting, marketing, public relations and journalism tailoring to sports

needs," he said.

Malaysia, he said, will accommodate volunteers from all Asean countries when

it plays host to the AFF Suzuki Cup next year and he hopes Myanmar will do the

same for the SEA Games.

-- BERNAMA

AFY JS

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