NZ’s Racing Minister Urges TAB NZ To Support Racing’s Recovery

New Zealand ‘s Racing Minister, Rt Hon Winston Peters, has urged TAB NZ to partner with other industry bodies to promote recovery in the sector.

In an open letter to the TAB NZ Executive Director, Dean McKenzie, Peters outlined a prerequisite for TAB NZ ‘to actively plan contingencies with the (racing) codes’ in the case of a COVID-19 revival.

Peters wrote: “It is also critical that TAB NZ supports Racing NZ and the Codes to deliver a racing season of excellence. While Racing NZ, the Codes and Clubs will have the lead on marketing and planning racing, TAB NZ should collaborate on opportunities which support revenue growth. A collaborative industry is a successful industry.”

The minister also called on TAB NZ to build and maintain reserves ‘with an eye on long-term objectives.’

Peters noted that TAB NZ might not be able to achieve a suitable capital structure by maintaining earnings alone, especially in the short term, and stressed that the industry must be able to ‘cope with any potential upheavals without the need for external support.’

Peters also referenced a retained betting levy in the letter: “In addition, Ministers expect that 2.5% of the retained levy should be directed to TAB NZ’s harm minimisation activities in line with earlier decisions regarding the use of the betting levy.

“It is important that TAB NZ’s operations reflect that it operates with a social licence to offer wagering products and that it comes with an obligation to minimise harm. TAB NZ should take a robust approach to preventing, detecting and addressing signs of harm among its customers.”