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Major Events Management Bill introduced

12 December 2006 Media Statement

Major Events Management Bill introduced

Minister for the Rugby World Cup Trevor Mallard today announced the introduction of the Major Events Management Bill to Parliament.

"The bill focuses primarily on providing greater protection to organisers and sponsors of major events from ambush marketing. There are obvious economic, social, cultural and sporting benefits to New Zealand in hosting major events and the bill is important for ensuring the New Zealand is a viable host country," Trevor Mallard said.

The bill results from New Zealand’s successful bids to host the Rugby World Cup in 2011 and to co-host the ICC Cricket World Cup in 2015, both of which included a commitment to ensure that there are adequate protections against ambush marketing. The legislation is generic and will apply to all major events of international significance that meet the criteria in the bill.

"Organisers and sponsors make huge financial commitments to make these types of events a reality, and clearly they do not want others to free-ride on their investments and trade off the goodwill and publicity surrounding an event. Without protection against this type of ambush marketing, New Zealand’s ability to host major events is compromised.

"These types of protections are increasingly common internationally. Legislation has been enacted in the United Kingdom in relation to the 2012 London Olympic Games and in the West Indies for the 2007 ICC Cricket World Cup. Similar laws have been passed in South Africa and Australia as well.

"New Zealand needs to stay in step with international commercial realities if we are to be seen on the world stage as a country which can successfully host major events."

The bill, which will progress through Parliament next year, contains provisions relating to:

- Processes for declaration of major events and major event words and emblems;
- Prohibitions against ambush marketing by association (the practice of creating a false association between a major event and a brand, good or service), including promotion use of major event tickets;
- Prohibitions against ambush marketing by intrusion (impinging upon the attention of an audience gathered solely for the purposes of a major event to promote a brand, good or service) in "clean zones" around venues, areas visible from clean zones and proximate to "clean transport zones";
- Controls on sale and promotional use of major event tickets;
- Provisions for administrative, civil and criminal enforcement; and
- Important safeguards on existing rights and honest business activities.

ENDS

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