GIS – 11 December, 2019: The Government of Mauritius is aiming at positioning Mauritius as a regional sports centre by developing the country into a vibrant and growing sports economy that would have spillover effects on the services sector.
It is against this backdrop that a first workshop on Sports Economy opened this morning at the Ravenala Attitude Hotel, in Balaclava. The event, which is focusing on the theme Sportstech Incubator, is organised by the Economic Development Board (EDB). Participants are young entrepreneurs, start-ups and other stakeholders coming from the sports and ICT sectors, as well as policy makers and facilitators.
The aim is to provide a platform for investors, policy makers, sports federations, start-ups and entrepreneur, vendors, innovators and sports teams to come together to share ideas, experiences and outlooks for the development of power sports tech incubators.
Discussions during the workshop are focusing on: the importance of digital transformation for sports entities: the art of the possible in Innovation and Technology; the role of Mauritius Research and Innovation Council in supporting innovation; and the challenges and opportunities to make Mauritius the epicentre of Africa regarding Sports Innovation and Technology. Resource persons are the Director of Innovation & Business Development, Global Sports Innovation Center, Mr Inigo Bonilla, and the Officer in Charge, Mauritius Research and Innovation Council, Dr. N. Gopaul.
In his address, the Chairman of the EDB, Mr Charles Cartier, remarked that besides the economic agenda to develop sports and physical activity as an economic pillar, the strategy behind the development of a sports economy is to achieve social integration, empower women, improve the quality of life and well-being and create a strong international identity through elite and internationally practised world-renowned sports.
According to him, the sports sector in the world today has turned into an industry, which consists of a sports market for goods such as equipment and clothing, development of high standard infrastructures, organisation of global sports events, sponsorship, and endorsements, among others. Over the last couple of decades, the sale of broadcast, and particularly television, rights for sporting events and competitions has become an extremely profitable activity, giving birth to a global industry worth about $30 billion, he highlighted.
The Chairman also recalled that the EDB has set up this year a Sports Economic Commission for the development and promotion of sports as a vibrant economic sector. He thus dwelt on the long-term agenda following the setting up of that Commission which include: Increase sports contribution to GDP from 1.2% to 1.8% by 2028; Grow private investment in sports facilities through PPP model and make them an engine for revenue generation; Attract international promoters for organisation of high-profile and global sports events in Mauritius; Address youth unemployment and improve standards of living; Job creation; and Drive sustainable innovation through Sportstech Incubators.
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