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NZ hosts Australasian Racing Ministers' Conference

NZ hosts Australasian Racing Ministers' Conference

Racing industry issues from Internet gambling to quarantine regulations will be considered at tomorrow's Australasian Racing Ministers' Conference in Auckland.

New Zealand Racing Minister Damien O'Connor, who'll host the conference, said government representatives from the eight Australian States and Territories would attend.

"It's an invaluable opportunity for ministers, industry representatives and officials to discuss common issues and share ideas. From a New Zealand perspective, it's important we keep abreast of developments in Australia."

He said the conference was timely, as New Zealand racing was enjoying a revival. "On course attendance has been excellent and the New Zealand Racing Board has undertaken some valuable research that will help secure racing's future."

Representatives of the New Zealand and Australian thoroughbred, harness and greyhound racing code bodies would join Ministers for part of the meeting and outline key issues.

"I expect a number of issues and mutual concerns to be raised, in particular quarantine regulations, the advent of betting exchanges and the ever increasing competition from alternative forms of gaming."

Mr O'Connor said the conference was the perfect opportunity for New Zealand to showcase its local industry. "After the conference, Ministers will be hosted at the InterDominion Championships at Alexandra Park tomorrow night and the Legends Day at Ellerslie on Saturday, where six notable Kiwi racing identities will be inducted as 'Ellerslie Legends'.

"The spectacle of the InterDominions is an excellent example of the entertainment racing provides."

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