Government Review of the New Zealand Racing Industry

Latest Information

Racing Industry Bill introduced (5 December 2019)

The Minister for Racing introduced the Racing Industry Bill which forms the Government’s final legislative response to the recommendations of the Messara Report. You can read the Minister’s announcement of the Bill’s first reading here: Final steps for racing industry reform 10 December 2019 (Beehive website)

An overview of the proposals contained in the Bill can be found here: Racing Policy

More information on the decisions that comprise this Bill are set out in a series of Cabinet Papers.

The proactively released Cabinet papers can be accessed here:

These papers can also be accessed here: Proactive releases

Subject to its passage, the Racing Industry Bill will implement changes to the racing integrity system that are based on a report by Mr Malcom Burgess MNZM. This report can be found here:

In December 2018 the Minister for Racing commissioned a Ministerial Advisory Committee (the MAC) to inform the next steps on the Messara Review. Members of the MAC have since been appointed to the Racing Industry Transition Agency to lead a program of change for the New Zealand racing industry. You can read the Committee’s final report to the Minister here: 

A full Regulatory Impact Statement for the Racing Industry Bill can be accessed here: Regulatory Impact Statements

Previous announcements

Letter of Expectations for the Racing Industry Transition Agency (25 July 2019)

Racing reforms comes into force (1 July 2019)

RITA Appointments announced (21 June 2019)

The Minister for Racing announced the Board members of the Racing Industry Transition Agency following the passing of the Racing Reform Bill. You can read the announcement here:

Racing Reform Bill passed third reading (20 June 2019)

The Racing Reform Bill passed its third and final reading. You can read the announcement here:

Repeal of the betting levy announced (17 May 2019)

The Minister for Racing announced the repeal of the totalisator duty (betting levy). The levy will be phased out and these funds will instead be reinvested with the racing and sports sectors. A proportion of these funds will also be set aside for industry led gambling harm minimisation initiatives. You can read the announcements here:

Government announces reform to NZ Racing Industry (17 April 2019)

The Minister for Racing announced changes to revitalise the New Zealand racing industry. Cabinet has agreed to the overall intent of the Review of the New Zealand Racing Industry (the Messara Report) and have agreed to plans to implement reforms through two Bills to amend the Racing Act 2003. The first Bill, due to be enacted by 1 July 2019, will begin the process of structural reform and provide financial relief to the industry. 

You can read a copy of the Minister’s news release here: Next steps for racing industry reform (17/4/2019) 

Information on these decisions are set out in a series of three Cabinet papers:

These papers can also be accessed here: Proactive Releases

A Regulatory Impact Assessment was prepared by the Department of Internal Affairs. It can be accessed here: Regulatory Impact Statements

Stakeholder feedback on John Messara’s Review of the New Zealand Racing industry was sought during October 2018. A summary of submissions can be found here: 

The Minister for Racing commissioned a Ministerial Advisory Committee to inform next steps on the Messara Review. You can read the Committee’s interim report to the Minister here:

Ministerial Advisory Committee announced (13 December 2019)

The Minister for Racing announced a five-member Ministerial Advisory Committee to inform next steps on the Messara Review. You can read this announcement here: Racing Ministerial Advisory Committee (13 December 2018)

Review of the New Zealand racing industry released (30 August 2018) 

In April 2018 the Minister for Racing, Rt Hon Winston Peters appointed senior Australian racing expert John Messara to review the New Zealand racing industry’s governance structures, and provide recommendations on future directions for the industry. 

The Minister released the report on 30 August 2018 and it can be found here:

You can read a copy of the Minister’s news release here: Review of the racing industry (Beehive website)

You can read the Minister's speech to the racing industry here: Rt Hon Winston Peters' speech to the racing industry - 30 August 2018 (Beehive website)

View the original live streamed video of the report's release on 30 August 2018, featuring Minister for Racing Rt Hon Winston Peters, here:

Further information available here soon.