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New Zealand budget provides $100 million for America’s Cup, cuts Tourism NZ funding

New Zealand budget provides $100 million for America’s Cup, cuts Tourism NZ funding
May 18, 2018

The New Zealand Government’s new budget has announced a $100 million "support package" for the hosting of the America's Cup in 2021.

Team New Zealand won the right to host sailing's blue riband event by beating Oracle Team USA in Bermuda last year.

Following lengthy negotiations, Auckland was eventually confirmed as the host city in March after an agreement over the structure of the base village was reached by Team NZ, Auckland Council and the Government.

At the time, Auckland Mayor Phil Goff said the construction and related costs for the base layout at Wynyard Point would total $212 million, with the Council contributing $98.5 million.

A statement from Team NZ said the Government's contribution would go towards the infrastructure and running of the regatta, and not to the team itself.

New Zealand’s America's Cup syndicate has received significant public funding in previous years.

They were given $36 million by the Government for the 2013 regatta in San Francisco. They also received $5 million in bridging finance to retain key team members after losing the Cup match to Oracle, while a decision was made on whether to mount a challenge for the next event.

However, Team NZ emphasised that the funding revealed yesterday was not going towards the team, advising, in a statement “the $100 million America's Cup support package announced in the budget today is the government investment in the development of the infrastructure and the running of the America's Cup and associated events themselves.”

Mayor Goff said confirmation of the Government's $100 million towards the event would "help ensure we create a vibrant event and lasting legacy for the city".

Construction of the America's Cup team bases is set to start later this year once the Council gets resource consent.

With New Zealand tourism booming, the budget announced a cut of almost $6 million in Tourism New Zealand’s annual budget, a move described as “short-sighted” by Tourism Industry Aotearoa (TIA).

Advising that the cut will end up costing the economy through lost export earnings, TIA Chief Executive Chris Roberts commented “we are disappointed that today’s Budget has reduced Tourism New Zealand’s budget by almost $6 million.

“International travellers have an enormous range of destination choices, and we must be able to maintain and build our presence in our key markets.”

Within Tourism New Zealand’s allocation, the biggest cuts are to the marketing and promotional budgets, on which Roberts stated “TNZ is a very effective marketing organisation. Its funding must be seen as an investment, not a cost.

“Reducing your marketing spend when it has proved successful is bad business. Destination marketing influences travel decisions next year, the year after and the years after that. Even this small cut could hurt New Zealand’s efforts to retain its share of global tourism.”

However, Roberts noted there were small funding increases to support Tourism New Zealand in providing visitor information and for industry engagement while also welcoming the increase in funding for the Department of Conservation.

Roberts added “New Zealand’s natural environment is the main reason why international visitors come here and TIA’s 2017 Tourism Election Manifesto called for the Government to demonstrate a serious commitment to protecting the environment.

“While we are delighted to see the increased funding for DOC’s core conservation roles, it is only getting $1 million next year for better visitor management at some of the most popular spots. That’s not going to achieve much.”

TIA also notes that the Tourism Infrastructure Fund of $25 million a year, established by the last Government, is now considered part of the $1 billion a year Provincial Growth Fund.

Images: Crowd's at Auckland's Viaduct Basin after the fifth and final race of the 31st America's Cup in 2003 (top, courtesy Auckland Council) and Chris Roberts (below).

12th May 2018 - NEW ZEALAND GOVERNMENT LOOKS TO INTRODUCE LEVY ON INTERNATIONAL VISITORS

10th May 2018 - PREDICTED TOURISM BOOM COULD PUSH NEW ZEALAND’S INFRASTRUCTURE TO BREAKING POINT 

31st March 2018 - AGREEMENT REACHED ON AMERICA’S CUP VENUE 

26th March 2018 - TRENZ 2018 SET TO ENTICE INTERNATIONAL TOURISM BUYERS 

20th February 2018 - REGIONAL TOURISM NEW ZEALAND CALLS FOR COUNCILS TO BACK TOURISM

13th June 2017 - NEW ZEALAND GOVERNMENT COMMITS $5.2 MILLION FOR 28 NEW TOURISM INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS 

26th May 2017 - BUDGET A DISAPPOINTMENT FOR NEW ZEALAND RECREATION INDUSTRY 

19th January 2017 - STRESSES SHOW AS NEW ZEALAND TOURISM THRIVES 

26th May 2016 - NEW ZEALAND BUDGET BACKS ELITE SPORT AND TOURISM, CUTS FUNDS FOR CONSERVATION AND RECREATION

11th December 2014 - $30 MILLION INVESTMENT TO BOOST AUCKLAND’S STADIUMS 

31st August 2013 - TEAM NEW ZEALAND WIN GOOD FOR ECONOMY

8th February 2011 - WATERFRONT DEVELOPMENT TO BOOST AUCKLAND  

15th June 2010 - NEW WATERFRONT ATTRACTIONS FOR AUCKLAND’S WYNYARD QUARTER


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Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

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