State expects RM20mil benefits from hosting Masters Games


THE Asia Pacific Masters Games (APMG) 2018, which Penang will host, has received pre-registration from 70-odd participants of 20 countries since April 21, said state Youth and Sports Committee chairman Chong Eng.

She said the APMG Penang 2018, which was launched during the World Masters Games in Auckland, New Zealand, had attracted participants from countries such as Australia, Canada, India, Japan, Macau and the Philippines.

She said it would be the first multi-sports Masters Games event to be staged in Asia.

“About 20 sports are covered in the event.

“They are archery, athletics, badminton, basketball, cycling, dancesport, football, gold, hockey, netball, shooting, softball, squash, swimming, table tennis, taekwondo, tennis, tenpin bowling, volleyball, weightlifting and wushu.

“While in Auckland, we also took the opportunity to promote our APMG Games to more than 28,000 participants at the World Masters Games.

“We received a favourable response from the participants there,” Chong Eng told a recent press conference.

She then handed over the Masters Games flag to Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng to symbolise the launch of the preparations for the APMG Penang 2018.

It will be held from Sept 8 to 16 next year.

Lim said the state signed a Host City Contract with the International Masters Games Association (IMGA) last December to commit to the hosting of APMG 2018 as IMGA were the rights holders of the event.

“We’re expecting at least 5,000 participants.

“About 60% of the athletes will be foreigners who will bring their friends and families to Penang to visit our tourist attractions,” he said.

He added that the state expected a minimum of RM20mil in economic value from the event.

Lim said the state would provide RM4.5mil for the games while the Federal Government would sponsor RM1mil.

“We expect RM2mil from the registration fees, thereby reducing our expected cost to RM2.5mil.

“This is a rare opportunity to participate in a prestigious sporting event on our doorstep.

“Anybody eligible can sign up for any of the sports.

“In line with our efforts to promote a healthy lifestyle, we will give a special rate for Malaysians to register.

“We don’t want locals to be left out,” he said.

For more information on the games and events contested, visit www.apmg2018.com.

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