Tuesday, July 16, 2024

PM commits funding for next Team NZ America’s Cup bid

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated Team New Zealand on its America’s Cup victory and committed funding to support the team to stay together and build for their next title defence.

“Team New Zealand has once again made us all so proud by retaining the America’s Cup as New Zealand’s cup,” the PM said.

“On behalf of all of Aotearoa I congratulate Grant Dalton, Peter Burling and the whole team, those on the water and off it, for their achievements,” she said.

“Peter Burling and his crew of skilled sailors showed what they were capable of in all conditions, highlighting the tactical brilliance and sheer hard work of everyone involved.

“Following a hard year, Team New Zealand provided such optimism and excitement.  I know with all the international limitations that COVID created this wasn’t the competition they expected, but they’ve made us so proud.”

She said innovation, technology, guts and hard work had delivered glory for Emirates Team New Zealand.

“We want to see it all over again in 2023.The Government has already agreed that the successful America’s Cup team will be supported to stay together while it plans its next defence of the Auld Mug,” Ms Ardern said.

“Cabinet has agreed to invest in the team from within existing budgets. It would be subject to a number of conditions, including an expectation the Cup will be defended in New Zealand,” she said.

“The defence of the Cup offers a global opportunity to promote New Zealand as an innovative and successful nation, with spin-offs in areas like tourism and export deals.

“Although no request for support has yet been made, Team New Zealand has received government assistance following every America’s Cup since 2003. I anticipate a similar request will be made this year.

“$136.5 million was set aside in Budget 2018 for Cup-related infrastructure and activities and not all of that funding has been spent. Cabinet has agreed in principle to use that under-spend, should it be required, to keep the successful team together while it plans and regroups for AC37.”

The final details are still subject to negotiations, however it is likely to be a similar sum to that paid after AC35 in Bermuda in 2017, when $5 million went towards the team to help it prepare for AC36 this year.

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