KUALA LUMPUR, July 20 (Bernama) -- Malaysia needs to continue to focus on the digital gaming industry as it can help generate a lucrative income for the country, said Communications and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo.
He said the industry had improved vastly alongside other digital entertainment industries such as film making and animation series that have raised the country's stature in the world.
He noted that in 2017, some 60 local game-making studios recorded exports worth RM600 million.
"Apart from the ability to generate billions of ringgit for the national economy, it can also create employment opportunities, especially for young people," he said in his speech at the Kre8tif! @Schools programme here today.
According to him, positioning Malaysia as a hub for the digital content creation industry will also attract more foreign investment.
Gobind said the country actually had great but lesser-known talents such as Wan Hazmer Wan Abd Halim, who was the lead designer for the 'Final Fantasy XV' video game.
"Previously Wan Hazmer worked in Japan with a world-renowned gaming company, but he has now returned to Malaysia to help local talents," the minister said.
Gobind also congratulated Animonsta Studios for their latest animated movie, BoBoiBoy: Movie 2, releasing on Aug 8, which will also be hitting cinemas in Singapore, Brunei, Indonesia and Vietnam.
In the meantime, he emphasised that the development of the digital economy in the country should be inclusive so as not to sideline the disabled community.
"Let's work together to build a Malaysia that is digitally inclusive," he said, citing his ministry's cooperation with telecommunications companies such as Celcom, Maxis, Digi, UMobile and YTL to introduce special mobile phone packages for people with disabilities.
He said the special prepaid and postpaid packages were very beneficial to the group, as it would give them the opportunity to use the Internet as a platform to trade, and help them live more independently.
Commenting further, Gobind said that the Kre8tif! @Schools programme for special needs students introduced by the ministry and Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), would allow them to learn about creative technologies such as '3D modelling' and animation.
Kre8tif! @Schools, he said, was a commitment by both his ministry and MDEC to actively develop the creative digital content industry.
"We have many other programmes in the pipeline to ensure the Malaysian digital economy continues to grow and the people can enjoy mutual prosperity," he said.
Meanwhile, at a press conference after the event, he said the ministry would take appropriate measures to help film industry players in the country to venture into animation.
"We want to lead in this industry, we have the capacity to do it and Malaysia is full of talent. It's definitely important for the government to play its role in identifying this talent and also making sure that we give this industry all the systems that it needs to succeed," he said.