Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is determined to boost the esports economy ©Getty Images

Saudi Arabia has reportedly invested $488 million (£400 million/€456 million) into the gaming and esports industry.

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman announced the Middle East nation’s ambitious esports strategy last September.

The National Gaming and Esports Strategy was created with the aim of establishing Saudi Arabia as a global gaming hub by 2030 in a bid to boost the economy.

According to, Saudi Arabia’s esports economy has been boosted courtesy of contributions from the Saudi Electronic Sports Federation, the National Development Fund and the Social Development Bank.

Saudi Arabia is set to stage the next edition of the Global Esports Games ©GEG
Saudi Arabia is set to stage the next edition of the Global Esports Games ©GEG

Saudi Arabia capital Riyadh is scheduled to stage this year’s Global Esports Games and has previously hosted events as part of the Global Esports Tour.

The city is also set to stage World Taekwondo’s first-ever virtual competition at the start of this year, with dates yet to be confirmed.

According to a report by the Boston Consulting Group, Saudi Arabia’s gaming consumption is set to climb to $8 million (£6.6 million/€7.5 million)

Esports is a huge growing business but its relationship with traditional sports remains up for debate.

It has begun to gain more acceptance, however, including being added to the sports programme of some major events.

Next year, it is due to feature for the first time at the Asian Games as a medal sport as part of the delayed Hangzhou 2022 edition.