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New Zealand Racing Board Appointments

Rt Hon Winston Peters
Minister for Racing

31 March 2006
Media Release

MINISTER FOR RACING ANNOUNCES NEW ZEALAND RACING BOARD APPOINTMENTS

Rt Hon Winston Peters, the Minister for Racing, has written to the recognised racing industry organisations inviting nominations for appointment as the independent chairperson, and for appointment as members, to the New Zealand Racing Board.

The terms of the current chairperson and two members will expire on 31 July 2006. The incumbents are eligible for reappointment. The Minister intends to make appointments to the positions in order for their terms to commence on 1 August 2006, to coincide with the commencement of the recent changes to racing’s taxation regime.

From 1 August, racing will pay totalisator duty at 4%, down from a headline rate of 20%, on gambling profits (amounts bet less amounts paid out). The new rate aligns racing’s gaming duty with that of casinos.

“This is a very exciting time for the racing industry. The new taxation regime will commence at the start of the new racing season, and the industry will finally be competing on an equitable basis.

“Racing already makes a significant contribution to the New Zealand economy, but it has the potential to contribute to a far greater level. The taxation changes have levelled the playing field, and it is now up to the industry to build on its potential. The Board has a vital role leading the industry,” said Mr Peters.

Mr Peters stressed the importance of nominees having a good knowledge of, or expertise in, the racing industry, and/or expertise in business, marketing or economics. “It is very important for the Board to have the skills and experience to capitalise on the opportunities the extra revenue available from reduced taxation provides.”

“The independent chairperson plays a vital role in leading the Board. It is preferable for nominees for the chairperson not to be closely affiliated to a particular racing code or sector group,” said Mr Peters.

The Minister has invited all racing supporters and other interested people to make nominations. “It is important to bring this opportunity to the attention of as many suitably qualified people as we can to ensure we have a strong pool of candidates from which to make these appointments,” Mr Peters said. “We are looking for people who have the passion and ability to drive the industry’s performance to deliver on its potential.”

Nomination forms and further details about the board’s membership, functions and powers can be obtained from the Department of Internal Affairs website (www.dia.govt.nz) from 1 April, or by calling (04) 495 9313.

The closing date for receipt of nominations is 5 May 2006.

ENDS

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