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NZ Minister Calls For Focus On Integrity & Marketing
NZ Minister For Racing John Carter declared "focusing on integrity & marketing the excitement of racing will put the industry back on track to be competitive with other forms of entertainment". Carter (who met leaders from the NZ Racing Board & 3 racing codes to agree "on a way forward to address the industry's future profitability as it faces a wagering decline of NZ$100 million in the past 20 years") emphasised: "No business can sustain that kind of reduction in its income stream & it is vital to the industry's future that moves are made quickly to increase participation & profitability. All agreed on developing a new model of integrity services that will give independence to the 'policing' of racing. People will not invest in an industry - with time or money - if they don't believe in its integrity. Making both the policing & the judicial systems independent & transparent is critical to the integrity of racing. A high level of integrity makes marketing racing as one brand more viable too. At the moment there is a tendency to operate in silos, without the benefit of an overarching plan. There is a lot of magic on the racetrack & I want to see more of the great stories of racing in mainstream media. There are so many tales I'd love to see told of triumph against the odds, of great friendships forged, of mighty athletes both human & animal." Cater summed up: "It is clear from this meeting, which called together a substantial group of NZ racing's leaders, it is time to act. There has been some destructive negativity in some quarters, but I certainly didn't see that at the meeting table. I believe everyone is clear that the focus needs to be on the future & on success, not on re-litigating past issues. It is essential that the industry backs its leaders, because I certainly do. They have a passion for racing & they want to see racing flourish. I have every intention of seeing NZ have the highest quality racing. I sincerely believe that this is the objective of those tasked with managing the industry at the board & code levels."