• E-sports has become one of the fastest growing entertainment industries in China.

E-sports has become one of the fastest growing entertainment industries in China. (Photo : Twitter)

A leading personality in the Chinese e-sports industry is calling on authorities to create a framework and rules to foster the healthier development of the field.

For a healthy development

Xiao Hong, CEO of gaming company Perfect World Co. Ltd., made the call during the second Dota2 Asia Championships in Shanghai, China Daily reported. According to Xiao, e-sports in China is still in the early stages of its development and is still lagging behind the more mature markets in Europe and the United States.

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He said that, in order for the local industry to develop further, stakeholders should join together in developing the necessary rules and framework for its growth. Xiao also stressed that all parties should also be involved in ensuring their proper implementation.

In 2016, the Chinese government provided guidance on the further development of the industry. The Ministry of Education announced that it including "e-sports and management" in the list of new courses to promote. This has led some universities to establish their own e-sports courses.

Lucrative industry

China's e-sports industry has seen a huge wave of growth in recent years. In 2015, the country surpassed South Korea as the as the largest e-sports market in the world. In 2016, the revenues for the industry was more than $7.24 billion, up by more than 50 percent from the previous year.

Perfect World itself has ridden that growth to great success. The company was founded in 2004 with the purpose of bringing in massively multiplayer role-playing games to the country. It has since become the largest game importer in China, accounting for 40 percent of the total imports.

The industry has also proven to be lucrative for participants, the South China Morning Post reported. According to Derek Cheung, founder of Hong Kong-based gaming company Hong Kong Esports, professional gamers earn as much as $217,000 in global tournaments for the game League of Legends alone.

However, Cheung also said that e-sports athletes also need a considerable amount of training to have a good shot at those prizes.