Tuesday, March 14, 2006
New Zealand lowers betting tax

New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing (NZTR) celebrated the announcement on Friday in Auckland by the Minister for Racing (Hon Winston Peters) that the racing industry is to be granted tax equity with its gaming competitors.

The Minister stated, “2006 will be a watershed year for the New Zealand racing industry, and will mark the end of years of unfair treatment. These changes meet the commitments made in the Government's Supply and Confidence agreement with New Zealand First and will be part of Budget 2006. They come into effect with the new racing season on 1 August 2006."

Changes to the breeding tax régime were also announced and provide another significant and positive development for the industry. The key changes will be:

  • A reduction in totalisator duty to 4% of gambling profits (amounts bet less amounts paid out);
  • A decrease in the write-down period for stallions from 4 years to 2 years;
  • A decrease in the maximum write-down period for broodmares from 8 years to 5 years (or 6 years for those few broodmares that commence breeding at age 2). Broodmares that commence breeding at age 8 and over will be written-off in full in the first year of breeding.

    NZTR Chief Executive Paul Bittar stated, “This is a defining moment for racing in New Zealand. We will work with the Racing Board and the other two codes to ensure the benefits that flow from this decision are sustainable in the long term – that is the key. The viability of our industry, and that of our participants, is now greatly enhanced by this decision.”

    “Racing in New Zealand has been struggling against its international peers. These changes, particularly granting our industry tax equity with casinos, will ensure our competitiveness is re-established.”

    “NZTR is committed to implementing change for the benefit of our participants in everything we do, and to maximise total industry benefit. The Minister’s announcement gives us the opportunity and heightens the necessity for NZTR to drive its business and our fabulous industry, as a sustainable long-term commercial model.”