Review of Racing Industry

  • Rt Hon Winston Peters
Deputy Prime Minister

Minister welcomes racing industry review

Racing Minister Rt Hon Winston Peters released the ‘Review of the New Zealand Racing Industry’ by Australian expert John Messara at a public meeting in Hamilton this evening.

The Government commissioned Mr Messara to conduct an independent assessment of the state of the domestic racing industry and to make recommendations for change.

“Mr Messara’s review delivers a blunt appraisal. He concludes the New Zealand’s racing industry is in a state of serious malaise, and requires urgent reform. The review also warns thoroughbred horse racing is at a tipping point of irreparable damage,” said Mr Peters.

“It confirms what many of us have been worried about for a number of years and highlights the need for the industry to turn itself around.”

“The Government will now take the opportunity to fully assess Mr Messara’s report. My intention is to have officials produce a Cabinet paper with a set of recommendations for decision. While it is too early to say what Cabinet will agree upon, the severity of the situation means the status quo is unlikely to prevail.”

“As this review identifies, a complex task lies ahead and for that reason Cabinet will also consider establishing a transition agency to help guide the process, particularly if there are changes to racing governance,” he said.

“Racing is a significant industry built on passionate support. It has created an industry with $1.6 billion to GDP annually and is a major employer. As nation we should nurture this industry and grow it into something even greater,” said Mr Peters.

“On behalf of the government, I wish to thank Mr Messara for his work and making his expertise available. He has a proven track record in reforming New South Wales racing and is advice is immensely valuable for the New Zealand industry,” he said.

The report is attached and also will be available on the DIA website here:  ‘Review of the New Zealand Racing Industry’