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This gathering underscores the country's transformative strides in sports Image Credit: Bloomberg

Dubai: UK investors have been urged to tap into Saudi Arabia's burgeoning sports sector, with projections indicating its market value could increase to $22.38 billion (Dh82.2 billion) by 2030.

At the UK-Saudi Sports Investment and Innovation Forum in London, Basim Ibrahim, Director of Sports Sector Investment Development at the Ministry of Investment, highlighted that the current sports market in Saudi Arabia stands at approximately $7.9 billion (Dh29.3 billion).

The forum, organised by the Saudi Chambers of Commerce and represented by the Saudi British Joint Business Council, coincided with the UK-Saudi Sustainable Infrastructure Summit, according to the Saudi Press Agency.

This gathering underscores the country's transformative strides in sports, catalysed by Vision 2030 initiatives that are positioning Saudi Arabia as a global hub for athletes, tournaments, and associated investments.

Vision 2030 is The Saudi Vision 2030, which is a programme launched by the government in 2016, with the main aim of diversifying its economy away from the oil sector. It has three main pillars - a vibrant society, a thriving economy, and an ambitious nation.

Turki Al Fawzan, CEO of the Saudi Electronic Sports Federation, revealed that 67 per cent of Saudis actively engage with electronic games and sports. Meanwhile, Mohammed El Nemer, vice chairman of the Saudi British Joint Business Council, highlighted a robust annual growth rate of 12 per cent in the sports and entertainment sector between 2018 and 2023, signaling escalating interest in recreational activities.

The forum attracted senior officials and investors from the Ministries of Investment and Sports, as well as a contingent of 100 participants from the Saudi and UK athletic sectors.