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Antarctic connection benefit Canterbury and NZ economies

www.antarcticanz.govt.nz

Media Statement – Embargoed until Thursday 22 September 11am

22 September 2016

Antarctic connection adding considerable value to the Canterbury and New Zealand economies

A report released today estimates Antarctic-related activities bring $125 million to the Canterbury economy and $178 million to the New Zealand economy.

‘The Contribution of Antarctic Related Activities to the Canterbury and New Zealand Economy’ report commissioned by crown entity Antarctica New Zealand, shows the tourism sector accounts for almost 50 percent of the total value at regional level. This includes accommodation, restaurants, bars, and major conferences and attractions such as Canterbury Museum and the International Antarctic Centre.

Over 900 firms were identified as supplying goods and services for the four national Antarctic programmes based in Christchurch (New Zealand, United States, Italy and South Korea), with more than 3600 jobs in Canterbury dependant on Antarctic-related activities, and over 6800 jobs across New Zealand.

The Agribusiness and Economics Research Unit (AERU) Director, Professor Caroline Saunders said, “The report demonstrates how the long association of Christchurch with Antarctic related activities has a positive impact on Christchurch and New Zealand. This is reflected in the excitement and enthusiasm of those involved in activities relating to Antarctica.”

The report includes a number of future opportunities to be explored – noting the expansion of collaborative science facilities in Christchurch and the likely rebuilding of Scott Base and McMurdo stations in Antarctica.

Similar studies were undertaken in 2007 and 2013 and the trend shows Antarctic-activities are adding considerable value to the Canterbury and New Zealand economies.

“Antarctica is enshrined in our history by Sir Edmond Hillary and his team, a Massey Fergusson tractor, and a mad-dash to the South Pole,” said Peter Beggs, Chief Executive of Antarctica New Zealand.

“For six decades Antarctica has formed part of New Zealand’s national ethos. As dramatic changes in climate become more frequent, and as scientists become concerned about the future stability of the west Antarctic ice sheet, our focus on understanding the secrets of the past in order to predict the future is essential.”

“With only two weeks to go before New Zealand’s 60th Antarctic research season kicks off, Kiwis should take pride in New Zealand’s work in Antarctica and our contribution to international science and environmental protection.”

ENDS

1. The Contribution of Antarctic Related Activities to the Canterbury and New Zealand Economy (the report) was undertaken by Professor Caroline Saunders, Meike Guenther and Professor Paul Dalziel, of the Agribusiness and Economics Research Unit, Lincoln University.

2. The Agribusiness and Economics Research Unit (AERU) provides research expertise for a wide range of international, national and local organisations. AERU research focuses on business, resource and environmental issues, and four main areas: wellbeing economics; trade and the environment; economic development; and non-market valuations. Research clients include Government agencies, both within New Zealand and world-wide, other international agencies, New Zealand enterprises in the private sector, and community groups.

3. Antarctica New Zealand is the Crown Entity responsible for developing, managing and executing New Zealand Government activities in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. Antarctica New Zealand also manage Scott Base, New Zealand’s Antarctic research station which supports science in the Ross Sea region. With almost 60 years’ experience working in Antarctica, New Zealand is recognised a leader in the international treaty system, and has a strong commitment to the natural environment. Demystifying science through strong outreach and education is an essential part of its mandate.

4. The full report can be found on Antarctica New Zealand’s website here.


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